Jorge Rivera: I got under Michael Bisping’s skin (Exclusive Interview)


UFC Middleweight contender Jorge “El Conquistador” will look to extend his three-fight winning streak at UFC 127, facing Michael Bisping at the main event attraction of the night. Thirt-eight years old Rivera was originally scheduled to face Alessio Sakara at UFC 122 in Germany, but the fight was canceled only hours before its start due to Sakara suffering from a severe flu symptoms.

Rivera holds an overall MMA record of 18-7, finishing 13 of his fights via a knockout. Rivera’s last bout was against Nate Quarry on March 31st of 2010, which El Conquistador won via a Technical Knockout in Round 2.

Here’s what Jorge Rivera had to say about the upcoming fight against Michael Bisping, in an exclusive interview to

Hello, Jorge. Your next fight is against Michael Bisping on  February 27th, how are your preparations going for this one?
My preparations are going good, and I’m about to hit the GYM as we speak. What happened in Germany didn’t affect me in any way. My job is to concentrate on what next, and to get myself ready for the next bout. Michael Bisping is the only thing in my head.

You announced the fight against Bisping right after the bout against Sakara was cancelled. Bisping reacted saying that he would prefer to fight an opponent of higher caliber, like Nate Marquardt for instance. Why do you think he said that?
I have no idea, that’s what you have to ask him. He can say whatever he wants. At the end of the day this fight was put together, and I think I can beat him. We gonna find about it pretty soon.

In your opinion, what’s the main difference between preparing for Alessio Sakara and Michael Bisping?
Alessio Sakara is a fighter who’s coming forward. He’s constantly looking to pressure you and finish the fight. He also has better hands than Michael Bisping.  Sakara is also a Brown Belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. I’ll give Bisping an overall edge in takedowns, but I still think Sakara is a more complete Mixed Martial Artist. We gonna find out soon.

Michael Bisping recently said some pretty harsh things about you. He called you a “dork”, said that you can’t read and that he would expect more maturity from someone who’s 38 years old. Do you think you got under his skin for this fight?
My friend, let me ask you, do you think I got under his skin?

I think you did.
I think so too.

Do you think it will play some sort of factor in this fight?
Every fight is personal. I love when people say “nothing is personal”. We are going to punch each other in the face, and you can be damn sure it’s going to be personal real quick. You gotta do what you gotta do to get over, and that’s it. I’m not worried about anything.  It’s all fun right now before the fight, but when we get there – it will be strictly business.

The fight will take place in Australia, and if I’m correct, it will be your first time fighting so far away from home.

Well, I fought a lot in England. Traveled to Japan and Korea, so I know what time differences are. I’ll go there to get acclimated, and I’m completely sure everything will be fine.

I don’t want to ask you about a possible gameplan, because I think it’s pretty obvious you’ll be looking for a knockout. But in your opinion, what will be your main advantage over Michael Bisping in this fight?
I think I have better hands than him, and I hit harder. I’ll be looking to keep this on the feet, and hit him hard. Honestly, I’m just looking to get inside the cage and fight him. The fun time will be over pretty soon, and we’ll get it on in Australia. I think it’s the most important fight of my career, and I’m ready to get it on.

How do you sum up your plans for 2011?

I would like to have at least 2 or 3 fights this year, and get myself in the mix for the title shot.

Alright, Jorge. I really enjoyed speaking to you. Would you like to mention any sponsors before we finish?
Yeah, great. I would like to thank, Everyone at Alchemist Management: MC Hammer, Lex McMahon, Jeff Aronson, Kelly Crigger and many others. Tim Burrill Jiu-Jitsu, Peter Welch’s F-15, Florian Brothers. Everyone who contributed for my career, thank you so much.

  • Bisping would “expect more maturity from someone who’s 38 years old”. Bisping needs to take a hard look in the mirror before saying ridiculous things like that. He is just pissed because he has absolutely no comeback whatsoever to a hilarious video other than to get angry. He is the most immature, disrespectful, childish baby in MMA, plus he has a brain the size of a pea. Bisping is the one that has a lot of growing up to do.

  • I love that this website gets these exclusive interviews a lot now.

  • Wow Rivera hasn’t fought anybody on the level that Bisping has.

    Bisping will smash him with knees and punches in the first round.

  • Jorge Rivera fought Anderson Silva.

  • That’s our reward for no more fight links. Legitimacy has its upsides.

  • Haha yea that’s the reason why I started using this site too but it’s all good. I still love it. And why would someone weak that statement haha?! No!!!!!! Anton stop interviewing people!

  • yeah bisping has been winning the last few of his fights. you sum times lately i think bisping is going to change and mature but sum of the things he says is freakn retarded! you think where bisping is today ! and being a poster boy for the ufc and all of the uk, he should be just a little more professional just like gsp is for canada!

  • THF

    Anderson Silva, Travis Lutter, David Loiseau, Rich Franklin, Chris Leben, Kendall Grove, Martin Kampmann, Nate Quarry.

    I don’t know about you, but that’s top competition to me.

  • ck1

    cage rage and gary. The 2 uk haters!! one uk guy, murray, whooped rivera with ease and bisping will make it number 2.

  • That video posted a while back was hilarious!!

    I’m calling ”El Conquistador” by Knockout in the 2nd.

  • U say he should be more like GSP is for canada. I really hope he doesnt become like that. Many UK fans (not all) like Bisping because he is real, he doesnt try to be some corporate robot saying things he thinks every1 wants him to say … He says what he thinks and many fans (including myself) respect him for it. Dont get me wrong, I like GSP and think he is a great ambassador for Canada and MMA in general, but I like Bispings down to earth attitude. I’m from the north of England near where Bisping lives…. people from where I live love the guy.

  • its going to be same old story… bisping gets rocked by overhand right…. but goes on to win a unanimous decsion…

  • hey man in the past we had sum differences! i dont hate no 1 from UK! or England! and i can kinda see what you are tryn too say! but GSP IS THE WELTER WEIGHT CHAMP FROM CANADA ! and bisping is not! that is the difference! gsp is a true gentleman also he is 1 of the best welter weights of all time! till bisping hits gold! and is a champ he will have too go and do promos and be a corporate robot ! kinda like the way you put it! being a champion at the highest level makes you differant from every 1 eles ! gsp is a down too earth guy ! and yes i know theres sum things gsp is told and train what too say as champ , that he does not want too do and or agree with! that comes with the title and job as champ! i hope you can understand rick ! that is the honest truth! i hope bisping the best! because he gots his hands full this next fight! rivera hits hard! and he is explosive

  • @ Anton

    …and had the crap kicked out of him, too. Jorge is a much better fighter now, though. He’s also in a better place mentally. I know he had some issues there, for a while.

  • @ Jamie

    Agreed! I’ll actually go you one better and call it JR by KO round 1.

  • Bisbing is funny cause he can talk all the chit he wants but as soon
    as someone says one thing about him he starts crying, ” I never said
    anything but he started insulting me….blah blah blah..” like with hendo
    he said he never said anything about him but Dan called him a byatch
    and a douch….when he was an ass to Dan and his team so to see
    Rivera giving him chit is great……

  • Dan Henderson is the biggest baby in MMA. Ya cool he knocked out Bisping in devastating fashion, but then when Dana white wouldn’t give him a title shot or the money he asked for on a new contract, he sooked and went to Strikeforce. You can say Bisping is an ignorant disrespectful idiot, but at least he isn’t Dan Henderson.

  • There’s always that chance Bisping could get KO’d by a hard hitter, like most fighters but I especially see it with Bisping because he does get countered or just caught in a moment of bad defense – focus or positioning. So Rivera has that chance, and not a bad one but it is a chance. There are a lot more ways Bisping can beat Rivera. So Bisping’s relying on superior skill, doing what he’s good at where as Rivera’s relying on Bisping making a mistake, wrong place, wrong time. Sounds obvious, I know. That’s what it’s all about but I think those factors make Bisping the better fighter and mean I see him winning this. I think we’ll see a stoppage, relentless GnP. Rivera bloodied up, spirit broken gets saved by the ref late in the first or in the second. Problem is I see the same people on here forever predicting the next guy will ‘Hendo’ Bisping’s ass, then Bisping puts on a solid, improved performance and then you just say the guy he beat was a can. Same again after next week I suppose. But for sure Bisping needs a top 5 opponent after he wins in Australia.

  • … Couldn’t have said it better myself. If bisping does win, Jorge will just be another “can” to add to Bispings MMA record.

  • bisping and rivera arent in on the same level and gsp is the easyest guy to study for but i dont think anbody at welter weight can beat him but anderson silva going to destroy him and some time people hate on bisping for wining decison but look at a guy like gsp thats all he ever wins is decison

  • and got killed

  • ya he lost to silva franklin leben kampmann and david loiseau is trash wow he lost to five of them and was only able to beat the trashe ones thats funny that u consider him a contender

  • man i totaly agree with u i mean do u think rivera could beat akiyamia or kang or miller and its clear he cant beat leben but those guys were just ‘cans’right wrong them guys are real contenders and not them wash uped fighters rivera beat the only guy that is destent he beat is kendall grove

  • finally bispings fighting someone thats coming off of a win