It’s becoming a trend. If welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre’s recent performances indicate anything, it’s that he does not just dispatch challengers. Rather, he dominates them so readily that he destroys any short-term marketability for a rematch; at least not without the guy on the losing end -- a running tab including B.J. Penn, Jon Fitch, Thiago Alves and now Jake Shields -- putting together an impressive string of wins.
Yet St. Pierre’s lack of finishes in his last four bouts has emboldened the critics. What do you do with a champion who clearly demonstrates superiority in virtually every phase of the fight, yet does not deliver the requisite red-meat finish with a stoppage? This, at the end of the day, is the exclamation point we expect with a championship mismatch.
It soothes the dashed expectations of a competitive bout, the premise upon which the product was foisted and offered up for pay-per-view consumption. Like the previous five defenses of his second reign at 170 pounds, GSP’s superiority against Shields firmly settled the question at UFC 129 on Saturday at the Rogers Centre in Toronto.
However, the expectable move -- a jump to 185 and, ostensibly, a challenge of champion Anderson Silva -- is no guarantee. Allow me a venture into pop psychology here, but I think it’s apparent from GSP’s post-fight interview and statements on the topic previously that he is not sold on the idea. That’s no knock on him. More »