It seems Georges St-Pierre’s Octagon return is being targeted to take place at Madison Square Garden.
Earlier this year it was announced that the former welterweight kingpin had singed a new multi-fight contract with the UFC and would be making his return to mixed martial arts (MMA) competition at 185 pounds to challenge division champ Michael Bisping. No date or venue was ever set for the contest, however, and St-Pierre claimed that he wouldn’t be ready to compete until after October.
That didn’t fit UFC President Dana White‘s plans, as he decided to pull the plug on the bout and match Bisping up with the winner of the interim middleweight title fight between Yoel Romero and Robbert Whittaker. St-Pierre will instead challenge the winner of the upcoming welterweight title bout between current champ Tyron Woodley and Demian Maia at UFC 214 next month.
Per a report from MMA Fighting’s Ariel Helwani, the UFC rushed the fight between Woodley and Maia so soon so that “Rush” could face the winner at MSG for the title. Dana White confirmed the news in an exclusive interview with MMA Junkie:
UFC rushed to do Woodley-Maia in July so they could have winner fight GSP at MSG. 214 is amazing, but I feel for Maia: deserved more time.
— Ariel Helwani (@arielhelwani) June 28, 2017
“Georges and I talked a couple days ago when he was in Vegas,” White said. “Georges is saying he wants to fight; we’ll get this thing figured out. We’re talking about Tyron Woodley and Demian Maia. These two are going to fight soon. That will free up the 170-pound champion for Georges St-Pierre to return and try to regain his belt.”
UFC 214 will go down live on pay-per-view (PPV) from the Honda Center in Anaheim, California. It is headlined by a light heavyweight title bout between Daniel Cormier and Jon Jones. In addition to the title bout between Woodley in Maia, a female featherweight title fight between Cris Cyborg and Tonya Evinger will also be featured.