Does Georges St-Pierre owe anyone a rematch, or does the UFC owe the champ a little time off?


georges-st-pierre-ufc-167

(This story first appeared in Monday’s USA TODAY.)

After six years as arguably the most reliable, bankable champion in the UFC, welterweight titleholder Georges St-Pierre would like a little time off.

This, according to UFC President Dana White and fans outraged by St-Pierre’s narrow split-decision win vs. challenger Johny Hendricks (15-2 mixed martial arts, 10-2 UFC) in UFC 167, is unacceptable.

I can’t sleep at night, man,” St-Pierre (25-2, 19-2) said during the postfight news conference. “I’m going crazy. I have issues, and I need to get out for a while. I don’t know what I’m going to do.”

According to White, what he’s going to do is give Hendricks a rematch, and it probably will happen sooner rather than later.

His problems aren’t as bad as he thinks they are,” White told news reporters after a private chat with St-Pierre. “We’ll get through this.”

That was after he’d had a chance to talk with the champion about what, specifically, St-Pierre meant when he said he wanted to step away from the sport for a little while.

When White first heard him say it to the nearly 15,000 fans at MGM Grand Arena, he was apoplectic.

“You don’t just say, ‘Hey, I’m going to take a while off, and maybe I’ll be back and maybe I won’t,’” White said. “You owe it to the fans, you owe it to that belt, you owe it to this company and to Johny Hendricks to give him that opportunity to fight again. Unless you’re going to retire.”

The only thing St-Pierre was sure of after taking a battering from Hendricks was he wasn’t sure what he wanted to do.

That didn’t seem to sit well with White, who assured reporters the rematch would happen and there wouldn’t be a prolonged “waiting situation” before it did.

It didn’t sit well with Hendricks’ team, either. “We’re looking forward to a rematch and believe we should be the champion already,” Ted Ehrhardt of Team Takedown, Hendricks’ management group, said Sunday in an e-mail. “As Johny said, the next fight will not be a decision.”

If there’s any fighter who has earned a little time off upon request, however, it’s St-Pierre.

Although many fans and media members thought he didn’t deserve the win against Hendricks, few can deny he has been the consummate company man for the UFC throughout his title reign.

As White told USA TODAY Sports in November 2012, “He’s a guy you can rely on in every way, shape and form. He’s a guy you can build your business around.”

Of course, you can only do that if he’s around. But if he doesn’t want to be around, at least until he gets his life sorted out, doesn’t he deserve the chance to make that call without being pressured into a quick return?

White might not think St-Pierre’s personal problems are worth him taking time off, but they aren’t White’s problems. It also won’t be his face getting punched if Hendricks and St-Pierre meet again.

For complete coverage of UFC 167, stay tuned to the UFC Events section of the site.

view original article >>
Report here if this news is invalid.

Related News

  • 11 days ago
  • 306 views

The former UFC welterweight champ got a lot of ink -- including a picture posing with Hollywood star Leonard Dicaprio - in the world's top newspaper this weekend. Unfortunately it was because of his read news >>

  • 28 days ago
  • 611 views

Au revoir! Former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) welterweight champion and clean-sport crusader, Georges St. Pierre, asked the judge for leniency when sentencing his "good friend" and fellow Ca read news >>

  • 28 days ago
  • 5 views

After being sidelined for nearly three years, Dominick Cruz will make his long-awaited UFC return at UFC 178 against Takeya Mizugaki. There’s one problem, though: The fight won’t be featured on the a read news >>

  • 27 days ago
  • 5 views

Former UFC welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre says he'll never fight again without drug testing from a credible independent anti-doping organization. read news >>

  • 27 days ago
  • 13 views

Former longtime UFC welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre says fight fans shouldn't expect him to strap on the gloves again unless the world's premiere mixed martial arts organization institutes in read news >>

  • 18 days ago
  • 1 views

From the rematch with a former champ to a last-minute switcheroo involving a debuting fighter from the prelims, T.J. Dillashaw faced one unreasonable demand after another en route to his UFC 177 vict read news >>

  • 7 days ago
  • 1 views

Georges St-Pierre's longtime trainer says he believes the former champ's competitive fires could lead him to return. UFC boss says he could get immediate title shot, if he wants it. read news >>

  • 7 days ago
  • 5 views

Georges St-Pierre may or may not return to the octagon, but when he does, a title shot is waiting for him, according to UFC President Dana White.Filed under: Featured, MMA Rumors, News, UFC read news >>

  • 8 days ago
  • 0 views

UFC president Dana White talks Georges St-Pierre, Jon Jones and Eddie Alvarez in the latest edition of "The Download." read news >>