UFC president Dana White changed his stance on former welterweight champ Georges St-Pierre following the French-Canadian star's controversial win over Johny Hendricks at UFC 167.
A battered and bloody St-Pierre won a 48-47, 47-48, 48-47 split decision over an essentially unscathed Hendricks on Nov. 16.
The questionable nature of St-Pierre's win didn't irk White as much as GSP's shocking decision to announce his sabbatical and vacate the title he'd held since 2007. It came less than a month after UFC 167.
Since then, St-Pierre and White have traded blows in the media, a spat that reached a head when White boldly responded to GSP's criticisms of the UFC's drug-testing policies on The Dan Le Batard Show.
He wanted to do the extra testing in the Hendricks fight to prove to the other fighters he's not (on PED's). So he said, 'Let's have Johny do it, too.' They both wanted to use separate companies, just like boxing, and that's never going to work out. Then he criticized us for not making it happen. They're being drug tested by the government. The government is in there testing them. We have the most stringent drug testing, not only us, but boxing, too. So his statements were crazy. Makes no sense, he's just upset at me. He's upset with me, so why he'd make those statements, I don't know. I'm assuming that's why, so, he's crazy. He's way out of line there.
Earlier in the show, White explained to Le Batard that St-Pierre's discontent spawned not from the UFC's drug-testing guidelines, but from White's opinions regarding GSP's highly disputed win at UFC 167.
Georges is a little upset with me. Georges is upset with me because I said I thought Johny Hendricks won the fight. Let me tell you what. Who has said more nice things about Georges St-Pierre over the last 10 years than me? Nobody, his parents don't talk about him as good as I do. So the one time I don't think he won the fight, (and) I'm always very honest in my opinions and what I think, and he's upset about it.
The 32-year-old St-Pierre vacated his title in the midst of one of the most dominant runs in UFC history, one that saw him win 12 straight bouts, including 11 victories in title fights.
Hendricks, the UFC's top-ranked 170-pounder, will locks horns with the surging Robbie Lawler (No. 3) for the vacated welterweight strap at UFC 171 on March 15 in Dallas.