Years ago, my dad saw a young Georges St. Pierre fight before I did. When I finally got a chance to see GSP in action, I agreed with my dad that he was like some Jean Claude Van Damme movie character come to life, what with his crazy kicks and foreign accent.
How awesome and funny would it be if Van Damme and his real fighter counterpart ever met, we laughed. Turns out, it’s just creepy.
Van Damme spent some time in Montreal with St. Pierre before UFC 154 working out, which is captured in this new video that he produced. We give Van Damme credit for being an actual athlete and for staying in amazing shape — and for, more than likely, being able to kick our asses — but he is creeping into Steven Seagal territory with this video.
While no one can approach the arrogance and outright fabrications of Seagal, Van Damme’s video does include a highlight reel mixing him acting in movies and St. Pierre fighting in real life. Ok, for writers of a certain age (mine) who grew up loving Van Damme movies, short-short splits on counter tops and all, the highlight reel is kind of dope.
Then you realize, “wait, is he actually drawing parallels between his movie roles and St. Pierre?” All that we can forgive the fifty-something actor. It is understandable that a Hollywood actor would try to get attention by jumping on to the MMA bandwagon. Van Damme also seems to be a legit fan of the sport and its athletes. It’s just that he may be too much of a fan of its athletes. Remember his creepy attempted make-out session with Fedor a few years ago?
Well his “training” with St. Pierre, eerily caught on slow motion tape, includes not one but several instances of JCVD pressing down on St. Pierre’s groin area. And, wait for it…yup, there’s even a genuine, full-on groin area grab.
Listen, we’re no Seth Davis and we’re fine with our sons watching MMA no matter how many sweaty men grappling with one another it involves. But editing a video to emphasize groin stretches is awkward, no matter how you cut it.
The coup de grace comes at the very end where, either JCVD has placed a camera on its side on the ground or knocked out his cameraman and we see him give an emotional message to St. Pierre, punctuated by a high kick. Whether, like us, you’ve lost your sense of sentimentality and cannot appreciate what might very well be a real and lasting friendship between St. Pierre and Van Damme, or you buy it, watch the video. It won’t disappoint in either case.