UFC 154: Latest News and Rumors Surrounding MMA's Big PPV
One of the biggest nights for mixed martial arts in 2012 is almost upon us, as Georges St-Pierre returns to the octagon after a 19-month layoff to take on Carlos Condit to determine the undisputed welterweight champion at UFC 154.
St-Pierre has been one of the two best pound-for-pound fighters in the world for the last five years, but after such a long layoff due to a torn ACL, will he be able to step right back in the cage without missing a beat?
Condit has been rapidly climbing up the 170-pound rankings for a long time before finally getting his shot at the welterweight title back in February. He defeated Nick Diaz in impressive fashion to win the interim championship.
Now we are going to see just how good Condit really is. This fight, more than any other that St-Pierre has had during his run of dominance, will push him to the limit. This could be one of the most exciting main events of the year.
In anticipation of the huge event, here is a look at all the latest buzz, news and rumors coming out of UFC before Fight Night.
GSP vs. Anderson Silva?
Without a doubt, the biggest news to break leading up to UFC 154 was that Anderson Silva was going to watch the fight between St-Pierre and Condit.
There's no doubt that Anderson Silva showing up to cheer Georges St. Pierre on ... he wants him to win this fight, and he wants to fight him after.
The St-Pierre vs. Silva Super Fight has been talked about ad nauseam for the last three years with no real traction behind it. This is the first real indication that we could be moving towards that dream fight.
However, it is important to note that St-Pierre still has to take care of business against Condit in order for a Silva fight to happen. UFC can't—or won't—move a fighter up who just lost a title fight in a smaller weight class.
As popular as St-Pierre usually is, the fact that one of the two biggest dream fights the UFC could make is in play will make him an overwhelming fan favorite this weekend.
Johny Hendricks vs. Martin Kampmann for Welterweight Title Shot?
While the main event is grabbing all the headlines, the semi-main event, featuring a pair of elite welterweight fighters in Johny Hendricks and Martin Kampmann, has its own bit of drama and intrigue.
There has been talk that the winner of Hendricks vs. Kampmann will receive a title shot against Condit or St-Pierre, though UFC president Dana White is not committing to anything right now.
I have no idea. I have no idea. We have to see how this thing plays out.
Carlos Condit ... will defend the title against who's next (if he beats St-Pierre).
Considering that Nick Diaz will be eligible to return from his suspension in February, UFC might want to keep all its options open to make sure that it can put on the most marketable fight to sell more buys.
As great as Hendricks and Kampmann are, there is not a lot of mainstream hype surrounding them. That might change if they have a great fight on Saturday, but it is a long shot.
Carlos Condit Wrestling to Beat GSP
Condit is one of the best and most well-rounded fighters in UFC today. He has so many weapons that he can beat you with, as well as an understanding of what opponents do well, so that he knows what to avoid.
One thing that Condit is doing in preparation for this fight is going back to the mat to work on his wrestling.
Per FightLine.com, Condit says that he has spent a lot of time on the ground to avoid St-Pierre's ability from the top and mount control:
I think I will be able to keep the fight going and not let him use his smothering top game and very methodical approach to holding me down. I have been working a lot on my wrestling.
St-Pierre has to be one of the most difficult fighters to prepare for, because he has so many ways he can beat you. He never fights the same style twice. He is going to let his opponent dictate what direction the fight goes, then adjust to that.
Condit is like a chameleon, being able to disguise himself and his style in ways that can frustrate even the most mentally-strong opponent.