The last time Georges St-Pierre entered a fight where he was at least a 7-to-1 favorite, the welterweight champion found himself on the wrong end of the biggest upset in MMA history when Matt Serra stole his crown at UFC 69.
After the humbling defeat, where GSP was an astonishing 16-to-1 favorite to retain his title, the 28-year-old morphed into the sport’s deadliest ground practitioner. St-Pierre has reeled-off six consecutive landslide victories en route to reclaiming his strap.
The 170-pound king stakes claim to a dominant 19-2 professional record, however hasn’t been seen since steamrolling then-top contender Thiago Alves at UFC 100 last July.
Although Dan Hardy possesses the exact skill set required to upset MMA’s golden boy, oddmakers feel his puncher’s chance isn’t worth more than a +450 betting line.
Hardy owns a 23-6 record and will be riding a seven-fight win streak into his first title bout. However, in his four Octagon outings, only one of his victories ended in a finish, while three of his wins were decided by the judges, two of which were via narrow split decision.
It was understandable why most questioned the Brit’s credentials after being awarded the opportunity to challenge the French-Canadian this Saturday at UFC 111, however he does have some of the heaviest hands in the division so GSP needs to make sure Hardy doesn’t connect with any bombs.
It’s no secret what St-Pierre wants to do so if he’s able to impose his will, like he’s done so effortlessly in his last six victorious outings. Hardy will spend much of the scrap on his back looking up at the Prudential Center ceiling.
That gameplan not only plays right into GSP’s breadbasket, but it also neutralizes the puncher’s chance that Hardy has in stealing gold.
St-Pierre has been here before and is adamant about not having to relive his worst nightmare. Hardy, on the other hand, will do everything he can to make sure it’s deja vu all over again for the planet’s baddest welterweight.
Please click the media play below to listen to ESPN.com’s Franklin McNeil breaking down the Georges St-Pierre vs. Dan Hardy welterweight matchup with 5thRound.com’s very own, Tom Ngo:
This week, Tom and Franklin analyzed each of the five UFC 111 main bouts leading up to tomorrow’s extravaganza. In case you missed it, here’s what the duo previously said about: