Georges St-Pierre’s recent announcement that he plans to return to UFC action wasn’t necessarily a big surprise, as rumors had swirled around the possibility for more than a year. The thing fans and pundits weren’t expecting was the bold claim that he would be willing to fight not only at the welterweight limit of 170 pounds, he’d be willing to come down to 155 or go up to 185 and meet challengers in those divisions, too.
A fight with GSP is pretty much guaranteed money and would provide an immediate boost in a fighter’s stock, win or lose. Even if locked down in mid-contract, a decent manager could likely negotiate a new one, as we’ve seen many do over the years.
While several fighters across the three divisions have expressed avid interest in a bout with St-Pierre, one middleweight, Gegard Mousasi, says he has no interest in the fight. Just ahead of his UFC 200 bout with Thiago Santos, Mousasi discussed why he’d never want to lobby for a fight with one of the biggest draws in UFC history.
"Well no, because I train with Georges and I consider him a friend. I could never fight Georges. Obviously, if he comes back, I think there’s a lot more big names that he can fight than me [laughs], so it doesn’t really make sense for him to fight me," Mousasi told Champions.co.
With the partnership between USADA and the UFC entering its second year, the more stringent testing has netted quite a few drug test failures. When asked if he feels that fighters will finally wise up and stop failing these tests, Gegard voiced the notion that bad decisions come into play more than a driving desire to cheat.
"Sometimes accidents happen, maybe you’ve taken something you didn’t know was banned," he said. "I think with USADA, no one really thinks of cheating anymore. It’s more a case of making a bad decision than deliberately wanting to cheat.”
Redemption is a big deal to some athletes, and is of no consequence to others. Mousasi only has a handful of losses in his 44-fight career, but he’d like to redeem himself of one fight in particular, the 2014 loss to Lyoto Machida. According to "The Dreamcatcher," Machida was “greased up,” making him Public Enemy Number One in his eyes.
"I would love to have a rematch against him," Mousasi revealed. "I was coming off an injury fighting in Brazil, and like I’ve said before, he was greased up. Of that, I’m 100 percent sure of. I would like the rematch, but right now I’m in a different place with the fight in front of me. The other thing is that he’s maybe going to get a suspension of a year or two -- I really don’t know how long -- but it’s not really in my mind right now and would be so far ahead of me because of the suspension. It’s not the fight that I’m looking for, let’s say that, but if it comes along, I’ll take it."
Gegard Mousasi will face off against Thiago Santos on the Fight Pass prelims portion of the UFC 200 card this Saturday night in Las Vegas, Nevada.
(Image via MMAWeekly.com)