>> Tuesday, October 18, 2016
Canadian athlete superstar and arguably the greatest Mixed Martial Artist of all time Georges St-Pierre just announced earlier today on the MMA Hour with Ariel Helwani that his lawyer managed to get his contract with the UFC terminated. He debuted in the promotion 12 years ago, and has only fought outside of the promotion one time since. The Octagon legend and TriStar standout has been out of action since late 2013 where he won a controversial decision over Johny Hendricks. There has been talk of him coming back to fight against Robbie Lawler, Tyron Woodley, Michael Bisping, and even Anderson Silva. Now it looks like none of that will happen after he said today,
"Right now, I'm a free agent. You hear it right, I'm a free agent. My lawyer terminated the contract with the UFC."
Now the former champion does still have options. There are some interesting fights in the bigger promotions outside of the UFC. Let's explore these options...
First one is Bellator! Bellator has been seeking to pick up any higher level fighters or popular figures from the UFC. Their best signings from the promotion have been Phil Davis, Benson
Now he does have a few options for top guys that he can fight there. These options are current champion Andrey Koreshkov, Douglas Lima, Paul Daley, and Benson Henderson who did indirectly ask for a fight with him after defeating Jorge Masvidal in what was his final Octagon appearance. He likely would not fight fellow teammate Rory MacDonald who is still awaiting for his Bellator debut to be announced. GSP could possibly pursue a fight at Middleweight, and so could Rory to be honest as both have recently expressed an interest taking their next fights at 185 pounds possibly. At 185 the talent in Bellator is scarce, but they do have a few dangerous fighters there though. Dangerous for Georges though? If does fight again, and outside of the UFC this is the most likely promotion that it will occur under.
World Series of Fighting may have some of the better talent as far as welterweights go outside of the UFC. They have two men who GSP has defeated in the past Jon Fitch and Jake Shields. There is Rousimar Palhares who has been suspended due to his unsportsmanlike conduct inside of the cage, but has fought this by taking fights outside of the promotion against his contract with with the promotion. To the delight of many fans Palhares has 0-2 since his suspension with both losses coming via first round KO within the first minute and half or shorter into the fights. Fitch and Shields are probably not very appealing matchups that fans would be too interested in watching again. As stated before St-Pierre could possibly seek a middleweight fight, and who better than two weight champion David Branch who is a solid talent. I am unsure of their ability to afford him however, but I am not confident in it.
If I were Georges I would go around signing big money-one fight deals and go to each promotion to take on the champion of each to add some more value towards my resume. Take a fight or two at middleweight as well, and retire. Definitely interesting to see where this entire thing leads to. Georges on the phone with Helwani sounded very unsure of his future. He wanted to fight, but did admit that the idea isn't as appealing anymore with the whole situation. Give him time to settle down and explore his options. I see Georges attempting to stay away from media for a bit until he can give us solid information. Even if he does not step into the cage or ring again I still respect him for what he has done in this sport. He elevated it to a new level meanwhile remaining a respectable individual that inspired many to be like him or to tune in.