Georges St-Pierre probably expected his “retirement” to go a little different than it did at UFC 167 on Saturday night.
The reigning UFC welterweight champ successfully defended his title for a ninth consecutive time against Johny Hendricks in a bout that has created more controversy than the 2000 United States presidential election.
[St-Pierre] is the biggest pay-per-view star on the [expletive] planet for me, and I still don’t think he won that fight. I want what’s fair, and that wasn’t fair. I think the Nevada State Athletic commission is atrocious. I think the governor needs to step in immediately before they destroy this sport like they did boxing.
As expected, Hendricks proved to be St-Pierre’s toughest test to date.
The top welterweight contender landed the heavier strikes, and he also outworked the champ in the wrestling department. St-Pierre kept the fight within reach by outpointing Hendricks on the feet at critical points in the bout. It was an incredibly close fight involving the top two welterweights in the world.
Mixed reactions rang out through the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas as two judges scored three rounds for St-Pierre and awarded him the split-decision nod.
There was speculation leading into the event that this could be St-Pierre’s last fight in the UFC. After the controversial verdict, the MMA legend announced that he would be stepping away from the sport indefinitely to clear up a few things in his personal life.
White, who was still irate over the decision, wasn’t hearing any of it at the post-fight presser:
You owe it to the fans, you owe it to that belt, you owe to this company, and you owe it to Johny Hendricks to give him that opportunity to fight again, unless you’re going to retire. There’s no I’m going to go on a cruise, and I’m going to be gone for two years, and I’m going to take a hiatus. I’m going to take a leave of absence. Whatever the hell it was that he was saying. That’s not how it works.
St-Pierre has helped the UFC make millions as the promotion’s main pay-per-view draw for several years. Saturday night, he broke the record for most wins ever by a fighter in the UFC. He is also one win away from tying Anderson Silva’s record for most consecutive title defenses in UFC history.
How else does it work?