Former UFC welterweight and middleweight champion Georges St-Pierre may be retired from mixed martial arts competition, but that hasn’t stopped him from being linked to variety of fights.
“GSP” has long been a well-publicised dream opponent for UFC lightweight king Khabib Nurmagomedov to face before the Dagestan native retires.
While future UFC Hall of Famer St-Pierre has entertained the idea of facing Khabib in the past, he is less certain now the dust has settled on his glittering MMA career.
“Why step back in? But why not step back in?” St-Pierre said in an interview with TSN. [H/T MMA Junkie] “We only live once. That’s the question that I’m facing now, you know? If I have an opportunity to do it and all the stars align and I don’t do it – because I’ve still got it now. I’d say I’m in my best years. Will I regret, when I reach 50 years? I don’t know.”
Spoke with the legendary Georges St-Pierre and asked why he would want to step back into the UFC pressure cooker when he could be comfortably retired.
His reply: "Why step back in? But why NOT step back in? We only live once! So that's the question that I'm facing now." pic.twitter.com/IxYLhBE68O
— Aaron Bronsteter (@aaronbronsteter) October 7, 2020
St-Pierre was one of the biggest stars competing in the Octagon throughout the mid-to-late 2000s and early 2010s, knocking off a string of contenders at 170 pounds as one of the sport’s most dominant champions to ever do it. “Rush” then returned from a long hiatus from fighting to beat Michael Bisping to win the UFC middleweight championship at UFC 217 in 2017, four years after his last bout.
Now aged 39, the French-Canadian went on to say that he is “kind of satisfied” with all he has achieved in the sport, adding that satisfaction for an athlete is “the death” of being at your competitive peak.
However, an additional factor which has impacted St-Pierre’s desires to fight again is the fact that he doesn’t believe UFC President Dana White will want to book a bout between GSP and Nurmagomedov to begin with.
“The chances are very low,” St-Pierre said of the Nurmagomedov fight coming together in a separate interview with ESPN. “I highly, highly doubt it. It’s not because of Khabib. I believe it’s because of the UFC. We tried two years ago. Two years ago, we were very flexible. We tried everything. And it didn’t work two years ago. I don’t see why it will work now.
“[Two] years ago, when I retired, we tried to make the fight happen,” St-Pierre added. “I was all-in. I was trying to make the fight happen. And the UFC didn’t want to do it. Now, two years have passed by. I don’t know if the UFC is gonna change their mind. Even if the UFC wants to make the fight, they change their minds, the stars have to align.”