In a matter of days, the UFC lost their biggest pay-per-view draws. Former heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar’s departure is a certainty after re-signing Monday with the WWE, while former welterweight king Georges St-Pierre’s (pictured) return appears to be as bleak as ever.
After St-Pierre voluntarily relinquished his 170-pound crown in December 2013 to “take a break from MMA,” UFC president Dana White said he was convinced St-Pierre would return to the cage one day. As the days turned to weeks and the weeks rolled to months, the rumor mill has been radio silent on GSP attempting a comeback.
There’s a reason for that – because White now believes St-Pierre isn’t returning to the sport that made him a famous millionaire.
“I offered him a fight in Montreal, and he said, ‘I’m not ready yet,'” White revealed on The Jay and Dan Podcast. “I’m on the fence, I’m leaning toward he’s not coming back these days.
“He’s rich and really doesn’t doesn’t have to do anything anymore if he doesn’t want to. He’s filming some movies. From what I hear, you know the Jean-Claude Van Damme movie ‘Kickboxer’? They’re remaking it with him.”
While the UFC is in dire need of crossover superstars as they continue their crusade to crack into the mainstream market, St-Pierre’s absence certainly hasn’t helped their plight. Now 33, St-Pierre doesn’t need the UFC as much as they need him.
“Rush” has the luxury of doing something not many professional athletes, let a lone fighters, get to do – go out on top and on your own terms. For those reasons, White appears to understand why GSP is walking away at the peak of his illustrious career.
“So he’s filming [Kickboxer], and he’s doing some fun stuff,” White said. “I was in L.A. one night and I went to the Clippers game, Georges St-Pierre is sitting right over there in the front row. I went out one night to a concert, Georges St-Pierre is in the front row. Fighting is one of those sports that you got to be hungry, and you got to want it. He hasn’t been hungry in a long time for a lot of things.
“He’s got a lot of money, he’s young, he’s got a lot of other options. And he’s going out on top.”