Georges St-Pierre is not impressed with the lack of support from the UFC.
The welterweight champ has always been one to put on a big, wide grin and say all of the right things, but behind closed doors, his relationship with the UFC may not be as strong as originally thought.
During an interview with La Presse, which was translated by BJPenn.com, St-Pierre admitted he was “very disappointed” with the lack of support from his employer. While he was hesitant to fully divulge the troubling issue at hand, he suggested journalists were smart enough to read between the lines:
The only thing is that I do not know if they [UFC] are willing to support me. I thought they were ready to support me, but I was disappointed, very disappointed with this turn of events…There are things I can not say. I do not want to get back to the UFC because it is my employer. However, I do not take journalists for idiots. They are able to read between the lines. They are able to see what happens.
As the UFC’s biggest pay-per-view star, St-Pierre’s relationship with the promotion has been relatively smooth sailing since he joined in January 2004.
What “turn of events” might he be alluding to?
St-Pierre’s disappointment with the UFC appears to be a result of the whole VADA and WADA debacle with upcoming UFC 167 opponent Johny Hendricks.
As UFC champion, St-Pierre has been accused in the past by several opponents for using steroids. In an effort to eradicate those accusations and clean up the sport’s image, he suggested to Hendricks that they both sign up for the Voluntary Anti-Doping Association [VADA] to undergo random testing for performance-enhancing drugs before their November 16 bout.
St-Pierre even offered to pay for all of the testing out of his own pocket, which was expected to run him about $16,000.
Hendricks was initially onboard, but he quickly retracted from the gentleman’s agreement after a sneaking suspicion that St-Pierre was in league with VADA. During an appearance on The MMA Hour, he told Ariel Helwani that he had no problem undergoing pre-fight testing, but he would much rather “go to WADA, the world Olympic testing.”
St-Pierre fired back a few weeks later on The MMA Hour , claiming “there was no such thing” as WADA testing. Rather, WADA is only an “organization that makes the guidelines.”
In a nutshell, an initial gentleman’s agreement basically led to a confusing battle of acronyms between both sides, which in turn led to nothing.
St-Pierre is likely frustrated with the idle play of UFC President Dana White.
Instead of backing St-Pierre’s vision for stricter testing, White called the entire agreement “a little weird” at a charity event in Boston, according to MMAJunkie.com.
He likely furthered the growing wedge between him and the champ by claiming that the entire ordeal makes both St-Pierre and Hendricks “look stupid,” during an appearance on Fox Sports Google Hangout. The comment wasn’t meant as an insult towards St-Pierre. White just doesn’t believe going the extra mile with VADA testing is necessary when a standard procedure test is already in place:
I think it makes them both look stupid. These guys are going to get tested by the athletic commission," White told reporters on Fox Sports Google Hangout.
This is something that Georges St-Pierre wants to prove to everybody, because for years, people have been saying [he's using PEDs]. When he fought B.J. [Penn], B.J. talked smack about him. Other people have talked stuff. The kid, not only is he another guy that's been with us since day one, he's never tested positive for anything even remotely close to anything bad. He's never tested positive for anything. He's always been a straight shooter and always professional, yet people keep talking smack about him. I just think it's crazy for him to even do this.
St-Pierre has defended the UFC welterweight title for a record eight times, and he has never tested positive for any banned substances in his professional career.
Is this simply a case of the champ doing too much to appease critics?