A history of 'Rush': GSP's five defining fights

Posted on November 14, 2012, 11:04 AM by Mike Drahota
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As long-standing Welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre prepares to return to the Octagon after almost 19 months away, it becomes important to remember what got GSP to the lofty status he sits today. There has been much talk surrounding GSP's inability to finish opponents as of late, his tendency to fight very safe, and questions surrounding his severe knee injury. All valid questions to be sure, but the bottom line is GSP has been a dominant champion, and has finished off some of the best Welterweights to ever fight in the UFC. Let's take a look at the five most defining fights of his career: 

TKO victory over Matt Hughes at UFC 65:

The number one fight of GSP's career to date is a defining knockout of Matt Hughes in early 2007. GSP had previously lost to Hughes, the longtime division king, via armbar submission. St-Pierre has since stated he was scared of Hughes in that first bout, but in the second, he came out with dynamic striking and nailed Hughes with a brutal headkick. A few punches later, and GSP was the new 170 lb. king with a bright future ahead of him. 

TKO victory over Matt Serra at UFC 83:

Another defining victory, this time in his hometown of Montreal, came almost a year after GSP suffered only the second loss of his career in a stunning TKO to Serra. Since admitting that he had taken Serra too lightly, he came in visibly focused on avenging the defeat. Dominating Serra, he took the fight to the ground and unleashed a relentless series of knees to the body of Serra, earning the TKO.

Corner stoppage over BJ Penn at UFC 94:

BJ Penn, as mercurial as his career has been, is no doubt one of the most talented fighters to grace the Octagon. He attained championship status at both Lightweight and Welterweight, an unprecedented feat. However, his battle with GSP in Las Vegas was a bit one-sided, as St-Pierre battered the former champ until his corner threw in the towel after the fourth round. An excellent showing of just how far St-Pierre had progressed.

TKO loss to Matt Serra at UFC 69:

The only loss on this list is here because it was a wake-up call for St-Pierre. Serra was a historic underdog to GSP at UFC 69, yet he came out looking to have the best in the striking department over GSP. He nailed GSP with several crisp shots until he landed a brutal right, sending St-Pierre to the canvas. A few more punches later, and GSP's title was gone. Perhaps that was the best thing for St-Pierre, as he came back stronger and more motivated than ever, reeling off nine consecutive victories since while never being in any real danger. 

Unanimous decision win over Josh Koscheck at UFC 124:

This fight, which was the culmination of St-Pierre and Koscheck's stint as coaches on The Ultimate Fighter, had a ton of buildup and trash talk thanks to the polarizing antics of Koscheck. GSP chose to keep his mouth shut in preparation for the fight. Obviously he had the last laugh in the Octagon, peppering Kos with so many jabs that he broke the right orbital bone over Koscheck's eye. GSP shut the mouth that never seems to stop running and furthered his already impressive legacy.


Comments

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  • azzkika
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    His best performance was against Fitch. He totally outclassed the 2nd best WW in the world.

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  • grapplure
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    what about the time he TAPPED DUE TO STRIKES against serra?

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  • David Saucier
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    I would take out Kos and put in both Hughes fights

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  • UnderdogGreatness
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    My favorite Georges Safe-Pierre's fights were the last two ones against Mart Hughes.

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  • IChokePeople
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    Agreed. The first Hughes fight was as pivotal as the first Serra fight.

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  • Evan Holober
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    What about the time Anderson got subbed by a flying heel hook (after losing most of that fight in the first place)?

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  • grapplure
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    @evan that was before anderson took the blue pill

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  • UnderdogGreatness
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    LMAO @ EH. Really?

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  • hinrik
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    its funny you say that, i remember it was one of the first anderson silva fight i watched, and he was announced as a p4p star and i thought that ryo chonan pretty much kicked his ass even before he pulled out that scissor heel hook!

    Reply 1 year ago
  • Evan Holober
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    hahahaha figured you'd like that one.

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  • Evan Holober
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    Ah, must have been.

    Reply 1 year ago
  • Knight_vision
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    He looked awesome against mayhem as well at UFC 52

    Miller took a beating!

    Reply 1 year ago
  • Evan Holober
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    He beat Mayhem half to death.



    The funniest part about it was Rogan continuosly saying how good Jason was on the ground, and how strong he was. Then seeing GSP completely dominate him in every facet.

    Reply 1 year ago
  • Evan Holober
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    Great fights Mike, but you left out the two best ones. Jon Fitch was the #2 WW in the world for years, and so was Thiago Alves when he fought him. He dominated FItch in every way possible, and beat Alves with an injured groin for the last 2 rounds.

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  • Mike Drahota
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    GSP has had some good ones. I considered including the Alves fight, but he has not lived up to the hype, even losing to Rick Story (who lost to Charlie Brenneman). Fitch was a great fight and a great win, but I just think that the bout was so much more under the radar than those on the list. And the UFC is about exposure and hype to a good degree, like it or not. That's the only reason the Kos fight made the list, the rest were finishes over former WW champions (and the Serra loss, which I think was actually good for Georges).

    Reply 1 year ago
  • Evan Holober
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    I understand your points, but fighters losing after certain fights should be taken into account much less than what they did before it. Before losing to GSP Alves beat Lytle, Koscheck, Hughes, and Pariysian. Three of those were top of the heap, and with his size Alves was looked as a bad match up for anybody in the world (even appearing on a few PFP lists after his dismantling of Kos). Plus by your own admission of exposure, the Alves fight was seen by more than any other fight on this list.



    Got your point about Fitch as it was outdrawn by the Penn and Koscheck fights.

    Reply 1 year ago
  • Mike Drahota
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    I see what you mean about Alves, he just hasn't lived up to the massive hype he had. The UFC 100 bout with GSP was massive, but without Brock Lesnar/Mir and Hendo/Bisping, it wouldn't have been as big. I'm only saying the former WW champions were bigger names than Alves, because they were champions.



    Perhaps some think Fitch was his best performance, but I think it's hard to argue that knocking out a former dominant champion and Hall of Famer in Matt Hughes with a head kick is not as good as a decision over a fighter who will never be champion.

    Reply 1 year ago
  • azzkika
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    That Hughes fight was far more pivotal in the overall scheme of things but his domination of Fitch was more impressive on balance.

    Reply 1 year ago
  • DKMcGrath
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    I don't count his win over Penn wether he knew it or not he was oilier than a wallmart parking lot,I agree with his win over Fitch being a more imressive fight he didnt have people playing catch with vasoline in his corner.

    Reply 1 year ago
  • timbo613
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    After looking at these stats, I'm beginning to wonder if GSP is really a pound for pound champion. To be honest those are not great wins compared to Jon Jones, Anderson Silva, Frankie Edgar, Jose Aldo ect. His most notable win was most likely against Matt Hughes at UFC 83, almost every other fight mentioned was boring and lack luster. It might be the end of the GSP era soon.

    Reply 1 year ago
  • Cookie77
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    TKO loss to Matt Serra at UFC 69: Should be THE most defining moment in his career. Reason? This is the fight the he realized that you CANNOT take ANYONE too lightly in MMA.

    Reply 1 year ago