Georges St-Pierre vs. Anderson Silva is the fight the fans want to see, but it is not the fight that should take place. GSP vs. Johny Hendricks is the fight to make.
Hold up. Sit down and relax. Yes, you. Let me explain.
Yes, the superfight between GSP and Silva would draw significant interest and have a chance to be the highest grossing event in UFC history. However, the fight would hold up two divisions for close to a year.
Silva has not fought more than twice a year since 2008, and GSP since 2007. That would put welterweight and middleweight title defenses in late 2013. Is it worth putting two divisions on the shelf for a year? No.
Also, there is a reason they created weight classes. Silva is too big for GSP. Famed boxing trainer Freddie Roach has worked with both men and he agrees. Not only does he agree, but in an interview with Fight Hub TV, he confesses that GSP told him that he is not comfortable going up in weight.
If that is the case and Silva knocks GSP out, that could have a long-term effect on his career. We have seen it time and again—when a fighter gets knocked out, he has a hard time taking the same shots he once did before. That would be unfortunate and unnecessary for the welterweight champion. Especially with hard-hitting challengers waiting in the wings.
So, let's switch to why Hendricks is the man for the job.
Five straight wins, including three straight over top-ten, and possibly top-five, fighters. He was the first man to knock Jon Fitch out, and he obliterated Martin Kampmann in the same fashion at UFC 154.
He has the power to end GSP's reign with one shot.
Hendricks will also be the best wrestler GSP has ever faced inside the Octagon, as he was a two-time NCAA national champion. He could put GSP's wrestling to the test for the first time.
The matchup is intriguing. Hendricks is the No. 1 contender in the division without question. That is the fight we should be focusing on. Not a fight between a welterweight and a middleweight.
The welterweight and middleweight divisions are as deep and exciting as they have ever been. Contenders are lined up and waiting as we speak. As champions of their respective divisions, GSP and Hendricks should not be seeking super non-title fights at this point.
Hendricks has done everything asked of him to become the No. 1 contender. Now it is time to give him the championship fight against the greatest welterweight ever. If the UFC still wants to hold a stadium show, I'm sure Silva and GSP defending their titles would sell very well.
It is not often the pound-for-pound best fighters on the planet are on the same card.
I admit I would love to watch GSP vs. Silva, but the risks outweigh the reward. Weight classes were put in place for a reason, and there is no reason to shelve two titles for a year for that fight. Hendricks should get the next fight against GSP.