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Michael Bisping details robberies, near-death experience on Hawaiian vacation

Michael Bisping
Michael Bisping
Esther Lin

It’s an all-too-often told horror story: You, or someone you know, went on vacation in an exotic spot and fell victim to a robbery.

Or, worse, a near-death experience goes down during some sort of outdoor activity.

Michael Bisping, for his part, went through both during what seems to be some sort of cursed trip.

The UFC middleweight champion recently took his family out for a Hawaiian vacation in Maui, a breather before he goes about the business of getting ready for what’s expected to be a November title defense against Georges St-Pierre at New York’s Madison Square Garden.

But as Bisping recounted on the latest episode of his podcast, “Believe You Me,” things started going south one afternoon as the family spent time visiting a waterfall.

When they returned, he found a window on his rental car smashed and all the belongings in their car -- including everyone’s clothes, and Bisping’s wallet with cash and credit cards -- were gone.

“We walked up to the car, and [son] Callum said ‘someone smashed the window,’” Bisping said. “I thought he was kidding, ‘the little f*ucker,’ but lo and behold, [someone] smashed the window. My wife had left her bag in the trunk, [they] smashed the window, grabbed that and all the clothing, of course we were swimming, so I just had a tiny pair of shorts on, my wife was in a bikini. That’s kind of how we were dressed. All the clothes, stuff like that, all stolen, including my wallet, everything.”

Compounding matters, Bisping elected not to go through the hassle of spending an entire day getting a new rental car, so they continued on with the damaged car ... then had a second robbery when the car was left in valet parking.

“The hire car, we were supposed to take it right back, but you don’t want to waste a half a day, taking a f*cking rental car back,” Bisping said. “So I’ve yet to do that. We drive around with a smashed window and we got robbed a second time. My running shoes and stuff like that, I left them in the next day and when we got back the car back, someone had stuck their hand in and taken the running shoes.”

If that wasn’t enough drama for one trip, next came a scary experience on a paddle boarding adventure, during what had started as a fun day with Kendall Grove, whom Bisping has known since Season 3 of The Ultimate Fighter.

“We went out with Kendall Grove and his family,” Bisping said. “We went out to the beach, great day. We had kayaks and paddle boards, stuff like that. So we say, let’s go out on the paddle boards and go out to that cliff [in the distance].”

Everyone made it to the cliffs without trouble, as several in the party jumped off the cliffs into the water. But then trouble started on the way back toward shore as the wind picked up.

“The wind’s picking up, we better head back,” Bisping said. “It’s me and my daughter on a paddle board. Balancing on a paddle board is not my forte, let me tell you that. Especially when there’s two people on there and the winds are blowing.”

Eventually, Bisping realized they weren’t making any progress in their attempts to head back to shore.

“We’re pretty far out, the cliffs were 200-300 meters away and we’re drifting further and further out. I’m like ‘holy s*hit,’ I don’t want to say anything to my daughter but I’m panicking a little bit, you know what I mean?”

So Bisping ditched his paddle board and tried to pull his daughter’s board in the right direction.”

“I jump off, my daughter’s on the paddle board, we’re drifting further and further out to sea,” he said. “I’m trying to swim and I’m starting to panic, we’re getting nowhere.”

Things got worse before they got better. Two older female swimmers were also in distress, and came over and clung to the paddle board, further impeding their progress. Eventually, help came, but there was only enough room for Bisping’s daughter and the older women.

“Me being a macho d*ckhead, I go ‘yeah yeah yeah I’m fine, I’ll swim back,’ because I assume there’s no room for me,” Bisping said. “So they all disappear, go off in the distance and I’m thinking ‘I don’t f*cking believe this, me, and my ego, rather than just say ‘I need help also,’ I’m going to drown now.”

Finally, as Bisping was starting to despair, he was rescued, as the lifeguards came back to fetch him after bring everyone else to shore. Somehow, though, after all his travails, Bisping managed to keep up his dry sense of British humor in the face of a vacation horror show.

“That was me yesterday. Fun times.”

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