“There’s an old saying in Tennessee — I know it’s in Texas, probably in Tennessee — that says, fool me once, shame on — [pause] — shame on you. Fool me — [pause] — You can’t get fooled again.” Thankfully for UFC welterweight king George St-Pierre, it only took one attempt to bamboozle his way to winning “The Ultimate Fighter 12.”
In the show’s second episode, GSP and rival coach Josh Koscheck were strategizing to formulate their teams. While in the locker room before the draft, it dawns on St-Pierre that he may be able to dupe his way to claiming his two top dogs, even if he lost the coin toss for the first pick.
Koscheck had Michael Johnson pegged at the top of his VIP list, ahead of Marc Stevens. However, the 170-pound champ knew that Stevens and Kos were buddies, and that’s when St-Pierre went into Ocean’s Eleven mode to ensure he could stake claim to Johnson.
“I know Koscheck knew, that I probably knew, that he and Stevens were friends. So he knew I wasn’t going to pick him,” St-Pierre stated.
The coaches were asked to write their ideal rosters on a small whiteboard. While Koscheck discretely penned his pecking order, St-Pierre intentionally wrote his choices nice and big to catch Kos’ wondering eye. Instead of having Johnson sit atop his list, he attempted to trick his counterpart by ranking Stevens as the show’s best prospect.
“Do you think he’ll bite?’ St-Pierre asked his coaches moments before the scam. “We’ll see if he’s smart.”
Koscheck won the coin flip and elected to take the #1 pick instead of selecting the first fight – after seeing GSP’s wish list and consulting his fellow coaches regarding the “top secret” info he just copped, of course.
The controversial wrestler went on to choose Stevens, which immediately put a Kool-Aid smile on St-Pierre’s face as he drafted Johnson next. Sako Chivitchian then went to the Yellow Team and the French-Canadian quietly swooped up Jonathan Brookins after that.
“Well played, Georges St-Pierre. Well played,” UFC president Dana White stated after catching on to the hoax.
St-Pierre’s sophisticated scam earned him the two horses that would eventually ride to tonight’s winner’s circle.
And that is how St-Pierre’s Red Team swept the TUF 12 finals.
Brookins is a 2.5-to-1 favorite to beat Johnson tonight inside the Pearl at the Palms Casino and Resort in Las Vegas, Nevada and collect the six-figure UFC contract.
FYI – Cody McKenzie submitted Stevens in 17 seconds in the tourney’s opening round. Koscheck gave his homie another lease on life by bringing him back as a wild card, but teammate Aaron Wilkinson made Stevens cry uncle with the very same guillotine choke in the 2ndRound of their contest.