UFC 167’s long-awaited Welterweight showdown between Georges St. Pierre and Johny Hendricks is in the books and St. Pierre retained the belt in what was without a doubt the toughest fight of his storied career.
The bout was billed as one of the biggest bouts in what has been arguably the greatest year in the history of the UFC. St. Pierre had a multitude of potential UFC records on the line, including most wins. Let’s take a look back at St .Pierre’s controversial win.
When the fight began, St. Pierre looked to pump his jab. He went for his patented double leg and got it, going for two guillotine chokes. The two fighters clinched and GSP landed knees and punches to the body.
The fight was restarted and Hendricks landed a big shot. St. Pierre pushed “Bigg Rigg” up against the cage, but Hendricks landed some big elbows. Hendricks took St. Pierre down against the fence and went to work. St. Pierre got back up quickly but ate a knee. GSP threw a front kick and avoided a hook. The champ threw a high kick as Hendricks threw some big shots that didn’t land clean.
The second round saw St. Pierre pump the jab. Hendricks pushed forward with a flurry but St. Pierre kept him at bay with his kicks. Hendricks hit GSP with a hard uppercut that hurt the champ. “Bigg Rigg” followed with a torrent of shots that wobbled GSP, pushing him against the fence. GSP threw his jabs and Superman punch, finding his range a bit. The combatants traded big shots, with “Bigg Rigg” smiling one off. St. Pierre threw a good head kick as Hendricks began to noticeably slow down.
When the third round kicked off Hendricks landed a good knee. He went to the body with a hook and a kick. St. Pierre responded with a good counter. A heated exchange followed, with both fighters landing clean shots. GSP threw a good right hand but ate a big shot. St. Pierre went body-head twice, showing very crisp striking. Hendricks missed a double leg but immediately secured a single leg takedown to land on top, but GSP got back to his feet.
The fourth round saw more of GSP landing his jab. St. Pierre slipped and Hendricks swarmed into St. Pierre’s guard. He smothered St. Pierre with good shots, but let the champion back up. Hendricks threw his big uppercut and some great counter hooks. St. Pierre was bleeding badly but stalked “Bigg Rigg” down. GSP fought hard to avoid a takedown and push Hendricks up against the cage. It was a very good round for the challenger.
GSP was in bad shape heading into the fifth round. He grabbed Hendricks’ leg but ate several uppercuts for his effort. Hendricks went for a kimura but GSP slipped out. St .Pierre hit Hendricks with a big right and got a takedown. Hendricks recovered and reversed GSP’s attempts to grind him against the cage. The bout was restarted and GSP went for a headkick. St. Pierre went for and got another takedown. The champ went for a late kimura but didn’t get anywhere close to finishing the hold.
It was a war but a battered GSP took home the split decision. St. Pierre stepped away from MMA for a bit in his post-fight interview with Joe Rogan. There will be a heated discussion to follow. What were your thoughts on the judges’ decision?