Georges St Pierre will have options when he returns to the UFC
Let’s assume the rumors are all true, and Georges St Pierre is returning to the UFC. First things first, it’s a huge deal for the UFC and their new ownership. I’m not saying there’s buyer’s remorse floating around the WME offices, but imagine buying the New England Patriots, then within six months Tom Brady retires, Bill Belichick decides to call it a day and Edelman gets suspended. Not ideal, correct?
Well, the new UFC owners are dealing with the very real potential of Ronda Rousey never fighting again. They have their other top star seeking competition in another sport and they have fighters retiring, being suspended and in limbo.
Enter the charismatic poster-boy GSP. Nobody knows for certain how St Pierre will perform coming back from a lengthy absence, but we do know, he’ll sell PPV’s. Lots of them. What is potentially very interesting is who he’ll face coming back into the fold. He retired as a Welterweight, but a lot of people are saying he could be facing Michael Bisping for the Middleweight title.
GSP vs. The Count?
A GSP vs. Michael Bisping fight would be very compelling, as the fans would love to see that fight. It has the built-in good guy vs. bad guy feel, as Bisping has a large number of people who love to hate him. He plays into it, and is smart about it. That said, a fight with Michael Bisping and GSP would do big business, and it would give Michael the potential payday he wants before he leaves the sport he’s given his life to.
Now, it’s true that Yoel Romero is the deserving challenger, but in this modern landscape of the UFC, they needs to make fights that sell, and not necessarily follow the rankings. I know as a fan I’d much rather see Bisping vs. GSP than Michael Bisping take on Romero.
GSP returns for his belt?
Another potential opponent for St Pierre would be Tyron Woodley. It would be an interesting fight on paper, and a real test for St Pierre coming back. Truth be told, it wouldn’t hurt GSP to fight a tune up fight before a contest with Woodley.
Tyron Woodley has to get by Stephen Thompson before he can look down the road towards St Pierre. Woodley has stated he’s about the big money fight as well, and Georges brings the buyrates and is the big money fight out there on the horizon for a lot of fighters. I’d be interested in seeing GSP vs. Woodley, but I’d prefer some other options.
Possible Red Panty Night?
Ok, we can’t realistically look at this without bringing up Conor McGregor. Conor and GSP would be the biggest fight possible for the UFC to make at this point. Georges St Pierre made a living out of squashing opponent’s game plans. It would be amazing to see Conor throw a spinning kick, and see GSP duck under and take him to the mat in one fluid motion.
In terms of all the possible fights they could make, this is the one that I really want to see. If they UFC can get Conor to ignore Mayweather for a bit and focus on MMA, this fight would be a financial boon for all involved. I don’t know that the UFC can make a match currently that holds as much interest as a GSP/McGregor clash. It has to happen.
Georges St Pierre & The Spider – The Original Superfight
The last name that is bantered about is Anderson Silva. I don’t want to see that fight. I dig that Anderson Silva is seemingly having fun in the Octagon, and not being focused on reaching the top of the division, but rather having fun in the cage and picking fights that speak to him. This is just not one of those I’d want to see.
If Anderson Silva meets GSP what is the potential upside? If Silva loses, it makes it harder to sell him as a legitimate star and if he wins, you snuff out GSP’s marketability. The fight might be fun, but ultimately it’s bad for business. It’s short sighted.
Here we are, on the verge of some very exciting UFC news. Georges St Pierre coming back, and that will undoubtedly be good for business. Who he faces first, is a very important move for the UFC. They are legitimately running low on stars, so they need to make the most of the ones they have. Pairing GSP correctly in the limited fights he likely has left is paramount.