The UFC's plan for Georges St-Pierre's Octagon return has changed - big time.
Originally, the former Canadian welterweight champ was set to make his 185-pound debut against division champ Michael Bisping. Oddly enough, however, no date or venue was announced for the bout. This left a lot of the 185-pound division frustrated as their weight class was essentially being put on hold.
Shortly after, St-Pierre took to Instagram to issue a message to Bisping, stating he'd be ready to fight him anytime after October. This apparently didn't fit UFC President Dana White's timeframe, who subsequently called the fight off and deemed No. 1-ranked Yoel Romero as the next challenger for the middleweight title.
Now White has different plans for the Canadian legend, saying that when "GSP" does return he will do it at his old stomping grounds of 170 pounds (quotes via LowKickMMA):
“[St-Pierre] says he will fight whoever the 170-pound champion is when he comes back,” White said during a recent interview with TSN.
As for the middleweight division, White says that if Bisping is unable to compete this summer than an interim 185-pound title will most likely be implemented:
“We’re trying to put together that Bisping-Romero fight,” White said. “If [Bisping] can’t fight this summer, we’ll probably create an interim title between Romero and Robert Whittaker.”
St-Pierre hasn't competed since UFC 167 in November of 2013. That night he took home a controversial split decision win over Johny Hendricks, a bout many believe "Bigg Rigg" won.
Shortly after that St-Pierre announced his retirement from mixed martial arts (MMA) competition and relinquished his welterweight crown. At the time of his retirement, he had successfully defended the strap nine consecutive times and hasn't lost in MMA competition in over a decade.
UFC President announced that the promotion had struck a deal with "Rush" on a new multi-fight contract back in March.
Currently, the champion of the UFC's welterweight division is Tyron Woodley, a stocky wrestler with vicious knockout power that has been the downfall of many. He is expected to defend his title against jiu-jitsu specialist Demian Maia next.
With St-Pierre deciding to make the move back down to welterweight, he could either step in front of Maia, who has been waiting for a 170-pound title bout for nearly a year, or wait on the winner of Woodley and the Brazilian.
Who do you want to see St-Pierre compete against inside the Octagon? Let us know in the comments section below!
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