Former UFC middleweight and light heavyweight title challenger Chael Sonnen is notorious for his trash-talk, but he did the best he could to compliment Georges St-Pierre's UFC middleweight title win at UFC 217 this past weekend on pay-per-view (PPV).
St-Pierre made his return to mixed martial arts (MMA) competition after four years of retirement to take on Michael Bisping in attempt to become the new champion of the UFC's 185-pound division. "Rush" did just that as he knocked Bisping down with a hellacious shot before sinking in a rear-naked choke that rendered the Englishman unconscious.
"GSP" is now one of three other men to have ever held titles in two different weight classes the the UFC; the others being Randy Couture, BJ Penn, and Conor McGregor. Despite his victory, however, St-Pierre's accomplishment didn't come without a bit of criticism.
He didn't look as fast as he once did inside the cage, his cardio seemed to be a little off, and had the fight gone into the latter rounds many fight fans believe we could have seen a very different outcome.
During a recent edition of his podcast, You're Welcome, Sonnen discussed St-Pierre's performance and awkwardly praised his title win by claiming that it was probably the worst of his career (quotes via MMA Fighting):
“People said, Georges St-Pierre with four years off, he’s not gonna be as fast as he was. Well, he wasn’t.
"People said he wouldn’t be big enough to just come in underneath a 185-pound Michael Bisping and just take him down like he did everyone else.
"Well, he couldn’t. He struggled there. People said his timing was gonna be a little bit off, he’d second guess himself after this long layoff.
"He did. It was the worst Georges St-Pierre I’ve ever seen, but what the world found out is Georges St-Pierre’s skills as a mixed martial artist, there’s a big gap between St-Pierre and the rest of the field. . .
“Yeah it was a rusty Georges St-Pierre, maybe a little bit slower. I thought maybe his conditioning wasn’t quite what we used to see. He’s still the best in the world.
“Do not ever go into a conversation about who the greatest fighter of all time is and not come out of that saying Georges St-Pierre. . .
“It’s very hard to deny reality. It’s very hard to deny what we’re seeing. It’s very hard to deny a two time world champion in two different divisions that spans back to 2001 and has one loss. One loss since 2001.
"Beat all of the guys in the previous generation. Beat all of the guys of his generation. Beat all of the guys in the next generation, and left. He comes back four years later, changes weight classes and wins it again.
"I don’t know what more a guy needs to do. Georges St-Pierre is the greatest fighter to have ever done it.”
What are your thoughts on Sonnen saying that St-Pierre looked like the worst version of himself at UFC 217? Do you agree that UFC 217 wasn't the best "GSP" that MMA fans have ever seen? And do you think that the Canadian will defend the middleweight title? Let us know your thoughts on the matter in the comments section below!
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