Georges St-Pierre: Will the Long Layoff Cost Him His UFC Title?
The perennial champion of the UFC’s welterweight division, Georges St-Pierre, has been sidelined with recurring injuries since he last defended his title against Jake Shields back at UFC 129.
However, once he returns to the combative fray of the Octagon, he will leave said arena minus his coveted belt.
Plagued by knee injuries (torn ACL and damaged MCL), “Rush” has been out of action for more than 14 months.
At present, his scheduled return is set for Nov. 17 at UFC 154 against the division’s interim champion Carlos “The Natural Born Killer” Condit, and that’s if he doesn’t suffer another setback.
In total, St-Pierre’s inactivity will amount to 18-plus months come fight night, and that doesn’t bode well for the Canadian native, especially as Condit’s mindset is to ensure his first shot at UFC glory doesn’t go awry.
St-Pierre (22-2 MMA, 16-2 UFC) is the No. 2 pound-for-pound fighter in the world.
In addition, he’s also the best all-around exponent in the MMA stratosphere. However, his personal rankings and skill set will not suffice to hold onto his title.
Firstly, he’ll have to contend with cage rust, a predicament that rears its ugly head whenever a combative fighter re-emerges from such a long layoff.
On the other hand, Condit has fought twice within that period—Nick Diaz and Kim Dong-Hyun. In that respect, Condit’s sharpness and activity will be the complete antithesis of what St-Pierre brings to the table.
Secondly, he won’t throw caution to the wind—psychosomatics will play their part—St-Pierre can’t afford another injury and as a consequence will approach the bout prudently, thus giving Condit carte blanche to take the fight to him.
Finally, even if he’s recuperated fully, there’s no telling how much the injuries will have affected his movement, and that’s another area Condit can and will capitalize on to relieve the 31-year-old St-Pierre of his crown.
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