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Tag: Georges St. Pierre

With GSP’s Future in Question, Jon Jones Has Inherited the UFC Throne

(Highlights from Jon Jones’s Q&A at the Gentlemen’s Expo in Toronto. Subscribe to CagePotato’s YouTube channel right here.)

By Brian J. D’Souza

“Will he?” “Won’t he?” The talk since UFC 167 has been centered around the potential retirement of UFC welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre. GSP’s face showed superficial damage following his split-decision win against Johny Hendricks, but more seriously, he absorbed the kind of blows that rattle the brain around the skull with life-altering consequences.

Even if St-Pierre returns to the octagon, the twin realities of declining motivation and the onset of age could see his legacy tarnished the same way Roy Jones Jr. forever damaged his reputation by continuing to box after appearing diminished in beating Antonio Tarver by majority decision in 2003.

Major pay-per-view draws like GSP and Anderson Silva simply cannot fight forever. When they try to continue past their prime, as BJ Penn insists on doing, it can hurt their drawing power. The UFC relies on stars who can captivate audience interest and raise the stakes, and right now the safe money for a dominant champ to rejuvenate the UFC’s fortunes is on light heavyweight champion Jon “Bones” Jones.

Jones was recently in Toronto last weekend to speak at The Gentleman’s Expo, where he was interviewed by Sportsnet’s Joe Ferraro. Jones made headlines by continuing to insist he wanted to face UFC heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez, saying “I think that’s going to happen in the next two years, I’ll go up to heavyweight permanently…I’ve been really thinking about me and Cain Velasquez going at it, and I think it’d be huge for the sport.”

In terms of public relations, Jones has been walking a tightrope, dealing with hyper-critical fans and the venomous Zuffa brass over various incidents ranging from speaking gaffes to the cancellation of UFC 151 to incurring a DUI while wrapping his Bentley around a telephone pole. The bottom line for Zuffa is simple — Jones is an asset for consistently bringing in solid pay-per-view numbers, but he needs to play the game and allow Zuffa to dictate the strategy.


Lorenzo Fertitta Walks Back Dana White’s Burial of Georges St-Pierre: “GSP Doesn’t Owe Us Anything”

(He’s smart, well-spoken, and he always wipes down his machines. What’s not to like about this guy?)

Watching Lorenzo Fertitta do interviews is like getting a glimpse into a utopian alternate-universe in which the president of the UFC wasn’t a petulant spaz whose first response to any criticism is to call you a pussy. Fertitta is an adult, and as such, he occasionally has to clean up the messes left behind by his minority partner. Here’s what the Zuffa Chairman/CEO had to say yesterday to Ariel Helwani, regarding Dana White’s now-infamous rant about what Georges St-Pierre “owes” the UFC following last weekend’s fight against Johny Hendricks:

I think Dana was misunderstood and hopefully he’s trying to clarify that. GSP doesn’t owe us anything. If he chooses to retire, then so be it, he’ll retire and become someone that people will always look up to as one of the great champions in the UFC. If he decides to fight again, then great. I think where the confusion was, Georges never communicated anything to us prior to the fight relative to that he may be making an announcement. In fact, I think Dana said that he had talked to him and he said ‘no no no, everything’s fine.’

And then after the fight, the announcement he made was very vague. And I think what Dana was trying to say was that either you’re retired or you’re not, right? We can’t just put the UFC belt on the shelf for an undefined period, basically put it in limbo forever, because that’s not fair to the contenders that have been working their whole lifetime to get the opportunity to get the belt. It’s not fair to the fans to have the title sit on the side for too long. And it’s not fair to us as a company because we wouldn’t be able to plan. I think that’s what the message was meant to be, but I think unfortunately the press took it in a different way.


CagePotato PSA: Dear MMA Media, Stop Asking for Dana White’s Opinion on Every Last Goddamn Subject

(“You know what, I *would* like to address what @sk8rdood45 said about this matchup. You tell @sk8rdouche that he and his 22 followers can all go f*ck themselves! Good question, Ariel.” Photo via Getty.)

Do me a favor. Head over to any one of the “serious” or “unbiased” or “professional” MMA sites you visit IN ADDITION TO CagePotato on a regular basis and scan through the headlines. There are plenty of options to choose from.

Now count how many headlines you read that contained the phrase “Dana White on_____” or something of the like. Hell, count how many times you see a picture of his face. Then comb through the articles a second time and see how many *without* White’s name in the headline still relate back to:

1) His opinions on a TUF-related issue.

2) His opinions on a certain fighter’s performance/career/potential with the promotion (these can also be combined with a TUF-related issue for bonus points)

3) Someone else responding to something he said.

There were at least four, weren’t there? Lucky for you, we’re on the downslope of a week with no UFC event on the immediate horizon. Had you visited those websites a few days ago (or next weekend, for that matter), you would have been bombarded by more Dana White news than you could read in a month. You’d find no relief in the forums either, where the most popular thread by far would be the one where White personally called you a “dipshit” and a “pussy” for daring to question him from your grandmother’s basement.

Does anyone else see what is wrong with this picture?


Quote of the Day: Georges St. Pierre Will Never Fight Again Unless Freddie Roach Is in His Corner

(Hey, it could be worse. / Photo via Sherdog)

We’re not sure if you’ve heard about this yet but UFC welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre hung onto his belt this past Saturday at UFC 167 with a controversial split decision win over Johny Hendricks and then kinda, sorta announced a retirement, of sorts. The story hasn’t got much attention so first off, we wanted to make sure you knew about that.

In any case, UFC president Dana White is intent on bringing GSP back to fight Hendricks again and, according to a new report from Yahoo! Sports’ Kevin Iole, who is in Macau to cover the Manny Pacquiao/Brandon Rios boxing match this week, “Rush” told “PacMan” trainer Freddie Roach that he’ll never fight again if he doesn’t have him in his corner.

Roach said he has yet to speak to St-Pierre on the telephone, but said the champion texted him.

“He said, ‘I’m not going to fight again unless you are in my corner,’” Roach said. Asked to clarify if that meant on fight night, as well, Roach said, “Absolutely.” To this point, Roach has never been in a UFC fighter’s corner on the night of a fight.

Roach, always eager to promote himself, also said that he “pretty much came up with the game plan” for St. Pierre against Hendricks. So…good job?


If MMA Is About Respect, Why Have We Turned Against Georges St. Pierre?

(Photo courtesy of Getty Images)

By Seth Falvo

My first thought following the main event of UFC 167 was that Georges St. Pierre had a concussion. Granted, “hack journalist” is a far cry from doctor, but he was displaying symptoms that should make any sports fan concerned. He lost track of what round it was, he had trouble forming words, and the completely vacant look in his eyes was disturbing — even for a guy as stoic as GSP.

If this thought occurred to Dana White and the media members in attendance, they did a damn fine job of hiding it. You know what happened by now: White claimed St. Pierre “owed” everyone an immediate rematch, the media attempted to steer Georges St. Pierre away from talking about the signs of brain damage he has been experiencing — despite St. Pierre’s best attempts to do otherwise — and White eventually talked to the champ in private before downplaying everything that St. Pierre admitted to experiencing as much as possible.

As Stand and Bang accurately wrote, “White’s behavior [was] so transparently morally repugnant that there’s no reason to spend time pedantically analyzing it.” He wanted to pressure GSP back into the cage as quickly as possible, because the longer the champion has to reflect upon the damage that he’s done to himself, the less likely he is to return to the sport. Yet there are actually fans — and plenty of them — who managed to take the bait. There are fans who buy the ideas that St. Pierre somehow “owes” it to anyone to accept a rematch against Johny Hendricks, that he’s obligated to return to the cage immediately, that Dana White’s dangerously-capitalistic treatment of his most influential champion is completely acceptable.

And let’s not forget the most disgusting part about this: These fans are delusional enough to say with a straight face that MMA is about “respect.”


Georges St. Pierre Denies Rumors of Father’s Illness/Unplanned Pregnancy While Dana White Continues to Force a Hendricks Rematch

(Does this look like the face of a man with an illegitimate batchild? Via GSP’s Twitter.) 

It’s safe to say that Georges St. Pierre’s post-fight interview/semi-retirement raised a lot of questions in regards to not only his mental well-being, but the litany of personal issues he claimed were forcing him to step away from the sport. Although Dana White was quick to tell reporters that GSP’s problems “aren’t as bad as he thinks they are,” Dana White is neither a recognized psychologist nor a Scanner to our knowledge, so his opinions mean fuck all.

Being the bottom-feeders that they truly are, TMZ in turn used St. Pierre’s ambiguous post-fight speech as a platform to let the unsubstantiated rumors fly  – specifically, that his father was dying and that he had knocked up a woman who was keeping the baby against his wishes.

In any case, White spoke to St. Pierre yesterday and has since refuted both rumors via The LA Times. While he neglected to discuss the specifics of GSP’s “personal issues,” St. Pierre’s former manager, Stephane Patry, attempted to shed some light on the issue during a segment on Quebec’s 98.5 FM Sports. His statements are after the jump:


St-Pierre vs. Hendricks: The Most Important Bad Decision In UFC History

(Ladies and gentlemen, your “winner.” / Photo via Esther Lin, MMAFighting)

By Adam Martin

There have been many terrible decisions handed out by MMA judges over the years, but none of them had the same consequences as the decision read by UFC ring announcer Bruce Buffer following the main event of UFC 167 this past weekend.

After five rounds of back-and-forth action, Johny Hendricks and Georges St-Pierre headed to the scorecards to hear the official outcome of their fight, which should have been in the bag for the challenger. Watching the fight live, I scored it 48-47 for Hendricks, giving him rounds one, two and four, and St-Pierre rounds three and five, all rounds scored 10-9. My friend and fellow journalist James Lynch, whose judgment I trust and who I watched the event with, tallied the same score on his card. So did all 15 media members who had their scores counted by the great database So did most fans and observers of the sport on Twitter and in the arena. So did UFC color commentator Joe Rogan. And so did UFC president Dana White.

Despite this, two Nevada State Athletic Commission judges inexplicitly scored the fight for St-Pierre by scores of 48-47, and the champion got to keep his belt. He then announced to the audience at MGM Grand Garden Arena that he wanted to take some time off after defending his belt for the third time in the past 12 months.

Hendricks, on the other hand, got screwed.


UFC 167 Salaries: St-Pierre, Evans, Lawler Take Biggest Shares of $1,841,000 Disclosed Payroll

(Rashad Evans made a quarter-million dollars for doing something most Brazilians would do for free. / Photo via Esther Lin, MMAFighting)

The 24 fighters who competed at Saturday’s UFC 167 event in Las Vegas split $1,841,000 in disclosed salaries and performance bonuses, according to figures released by the Nevada State Athletic Commission, with Georges St-Pierre, Rashad Evans, and Robbie Lawler earning the biggest checks. Of course, the $450,000 total for GSP doesn’t include his cut of the event’s pay-per-view revenue — an incentive granted to the UFC’s top stars which has helped give the welterweight champ an estimated annual income of $12 million.

Check out the numbers below, and keep in mind that they don’t include additional revenue from sponsorships or undisclosed “locker room bonuses,” or deductions for taxes, insurance, and license fees.

Georges St-Pierre: $450,000 (no win bonus, includes $50,000 Fight of the Night bonus)
def. Johny Hendricks: $100,000 (includes $50,000 Fight of the Night bonus)

Rashad Evans: $250,000 (includes $125,000 win bonus)
def. Chael Sonnen: $100,000

Robbie Lawler: $166,000 (includes $83,000 win bonus)
def. Rory MacDonald: $50,000

Tyron Woodley: $154,000 (includes $52,000 win bonus, $50,000 Knockout of the Night bonus)
def. Josh Koscheck: $78,000


Vine of the Day: Stephan Bonnar Is Not Too Pleased About the GSP/Hendricks Decision

(Props: UFC on Vine)

Just to recap, virtually every professional fighter on twitter felt that Johny Hendricks got robbed against Georges St. Pierre at UFC 167, as well as the guy who reffed the fight and the president of the promotion. One of the notables in attendance on Saturday was retired light-heavyweight veteran Stephan Bonnar, who watched the action cageside next to his longtime comedy partner Forrest Griffin, and gave us this classic bit of footage during the official decision. As Bonnar howls “newwwww,” anticipating a win for the challenger, Bruce Buffer blows everybody’s minds by announcing that, nope, GSP’s still got that belt. Bonnar collapses into a heap of despair. I did the same thing, pretty much.

Other reactions featured in this clip: Conor McGregor (exuberant, possibly because he had a stack of cash riding on the outcome), Cub Swanson (amused disbelief), Anthony Pettis (respectful applause), and Kenda Perez (just standing there).


St-Pierre vs. Hendricks Fight-Picking Contest: And the Winner Is…

(Photo via Esther Lin/MMAFighting)

The crazy thing about last week’s UFC 167/Scramble fight-picking contest was the fact that so many of you were basically right, even though the fight couldn’t have been any different from what we expected. Yes, Georges St-Pierre won by decision…again. He also took the longest sustained beating of his entire career. Who could have predicted that? Certainly not us.

But despite all the “GSP by decision” entries that came in, only one fight-picker predicted that St-Pierre would win by split-decision: Daniel Rogoff, who also got two of the judges’ scores exactly right. Congrats, Daniel, you’ve earned an official Kazushi Sakuraba t-shirt from Scramble! We’ve already sent you a Facebook message about how to claim your prize; please check your “Other” folder today.

Since only one person guessed the outcome correctly, we’re going to go back on our word a little and only award one t-shirt today instead of two. To make up for it, we’ll give you guys one more chance to win a Sakuraba t-shirt by the end of the month. Stay tuned, and thanks again to Scramble for making this happen.