It appears that UFC interim middleweight champion Robert Whittaker will (supposedly) get the next fight against newly crowned UFC middleweight champion Georges St-Pierre and he feels good about his chances against the former UFC welterweight champion.
As most fight fans know, GSP made his long-awaited return to the Octagon over the weekend at the UFC 217 PPV (pay-per-view) event in the main event and choked out Michael Bisping to become the new middleweight champion.
Whittaker noted in a recent interview that the outcome of this fight was somewhat of a surprise to him due to the fact that he picked Bisping to defeat St-Pierre.
With UFC 217 over, UFC officials are reportedly attempting to set up a bout between Whittaker and St-Pierre to unify the title. If the bout was to happen, then he likes his chances based on what he saw while sitting cageside for the second UFC event at Madison Square Garden.
“To be honest, he looked slower than he’s ever been,” Whittaker said of St. Pierre’s performance, according to Australian website news.com.au. “He’s just as crafty. You can see the intelligence is still there. His fight IQ is still there. He obviously hits harder at middleweight. But I hit hard, and I hit fast — and much harder and faster than Bisping. And I have much better defense than Bisping. So it looks good.”
If you recall, Whittaker became the interim champion after winning a unanimous decision over Yoel Romero in a five-round war in July at UFC 213. Keep in mind that this fight is not a guarantee due to the fact that it remains to be seen if GSP will stay in the division after claiming the belt from Bisping. UFC President Dana White has gone on record by stating that Whittaker would be his next opponent.
This all comes down to which weight GSP wants to fight at. There is still a chance that he moves down to welterweight and fights champion Tyron Woodley to reclaim the belt he never lost before retiring in 2013. Then you have the potential superfight with UFC lightweight champion Conor McGregor.
GSP said before UFC 217 that he was contractually obligated for at least another middleweight fight. Thus, that means that Whittaker is at least in the conversation to land a showdown with St-Pierre.
“I can’t even put it into words,” Whittaker said. “I was a massive fan of him when I was younger — and when I was at welterweight, as well. Every welterweight in the world aspired to become something like him. If I got the privilege of fighting him? Man, dream come true.”
“I’m happy to wait,” Whittaker said. “Fighting a legend like that is worth the time. My wants have to go on the back seat a bit for him. He’s a living legend, and in respect, I’ll do that. But if he’s going to hang around at middleweight we’ll touch gloves eventually. I’m confident.”