Retired UFC Middleweight Champion Michael Bisping was approached by Jake Paul with a potential fight offer, which the former mixed martial artist promptly turned down after having “a bit of a laugh with it.”
The Paul brothers’ fighting careers have been hotly debated from the very start. Younger brother Jake has continually found himself embroiled in controversy — most recently taking part in a physical altercation with Floyd Mayweather ahead of former pro’s bout with Jake’s brother, Logan.
Jake has seen success in his first few fights, even besting former UFC pro Ben Askren along the way to a perfect 3-0 record. The young fighter has already butted heads with several other former and current professional fighters such as Conor McGregor and Daniel Cormier.
It’s now been revealed that the younger Paul brother also approached retired UFC fighter Michael Bisping with a fight offer. However, the former middleweight champion had no interest in stepping out of retirement and back into the ring to face Paul, and barely entertained his offer.
First reported by talkSPORT, the former UFC champion confirmed that Paul had approached him with an offer to fight, but it did not garner any serious consideration from Bisping: “Jake Paul’s team did make me an offer which I didn’t suitably entertain.”
Despite the suggestion from Paul’s camp, the Brit had no interest in coming out of retirement, and pointed to injuries as one of the main reasons he declined the offer. Notably, the former fighter has dealt with numerous eye issues, including detached retinas and a battle with glaucoma.
Despite having “a bit of a laugh” with the younger brother’s offer, Bisping confirmed that he takes no issue with other former fighters who consider coming out of retirement, and even sympathizes with them in many cases.
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“I’m all for fighters being able to make money [after they retire],” he confirmed, and also revealed that his situation differs from many other former pros: “I’ve been very lucky. I commentate for the UFC, I do my podcast and I’ve got things going on. But that isn’t the norm.”
Although Bisping sees the appeal for many retired fighters when it comes to offers like the one from Paul, which likely come hand-in-hand with a hefty payout regardless of the result, he’s happy to remain on the sidelines as a commentator and spectator at this point in his career.
Jake Paul has faced backlash from the fighting community on numerous occasions as he seeks to improve his record, but despite the rejection from Bisping, he may have already found some other retired fighters that are more willing to jump into the ring with him — for the right price.