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One of the Greatest MMA Fighters of All Time Is Reportedly About To Retire

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Earlier this week, we brought you the story of an MMA fighter who hung on too long and ended up getting beaten into a fine paste by a younger opponent when Cain Velasquez got smashed by Francis Ngannou.

Another MMA legend seems to have heeded the lesson without needing his head pounded in, as Georges St. Pierre, one of the greatest cage fighters of all time, reportedly is about to retire.

Ariel Helwani of ESPN tweeted that St. Pierre is going to have a press conference in Montreal where he will make it official Thursday morning.

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According to Helwani, St. Pierre had been hoping to secure a fight with Khabib Nurmagomedov, but when that didn’t come together, he decided to simply walk away from the sport.

Nurmagomedov is the undisputed lightweight champion of the world, while St. Pierre fights at welterweight, so deciding on a weight — either at a full division limit or at an undetermined “catch weight” somewhere in between the light- and welterweight limits — might have submarined the negotiations.

On Wednesday, however, Nurmagomedov indicated he’s more than willing to fight St. Pierre for the legend’s last hurrah, saying on Instagram that he’s willing to move up as many as five pounds to create more of a sporting contest.

Do you think Georges St. Pierre is the greatest MMA fighter ever?

Nurmagomedov said he would even go to St. Pierre’s hometown of Montreal to make the fight, so confident is he in his ability to beat the once-great champion.

But as it stands, St. Pierre is 37 years old, turning 38 in May, and advanced age in a young man’s game is a fine way to get pulped — just look at what happened to Velazquez.

Indeed, St. Pierre first hung up the five-ounce gloves in 2013 before coming back in 2017 to defeat Michael Bisping.

But his first championship run happened way back when George W. Bush was president. There’s something to be said for acknowledging Father Time.

All the same, a St. Pierre-Nurmagomedov superfight would be a license to print money for all involved, especially if the fight happened in Montreal.

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Unfortunately, it seems St. Pierre’s mind is made up, as he issued a brief statement to ESPN on the subject.

“I saw what Khabib wrote, and I appreciate it very much,” St. Pierre said. “Unfortunately, these decisions aren’t up to us. I will address everything at the press conference tomorrow.”

Let’s face it. On paper, the thought of a fight between St. Pierre and Nurmagomedov would be one for the ages. But in practice, there’s just a little too much risk that the whole affair would be over in 26 seconds and the legacy of a true champion would be tainted ever so slightly by fans’ last memory of him being such abject humiliation.

We’ll all learn more Thursday when St. Pierre holds his press conference. But it looks like one of the greatest careers in the sport is finally coming to an end.

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Boston born and raised, Fox has been writing about sports since 2011. He covered ESPN Friday Night Fights shows for The Boxing Tribune before shifting focus and launching Pace and Space, the home of "Smart NBA Talk for Smart NBA Fans", in 2015. He can often be found advocating for various NBA teams to pack up and move to his adopted hometown of Seattle.
Boston born and raised, Fox has been writing about sports since 2011. He covered ESPN Friday Night Fights shows for The Boxing Tribune before shifting focus and launching Pace and Space, the home of "Smart NBA Talk for Smart NBA Fans", in 2015. He can often be found advocating for various NBA teams to pack up and move to his adopted hometown of Seattle.
Birthplace
Boston, Massachusetts
Education
Bachelor of Science in Accounting from University of Nevada-Reno
Location
Seattle, Washington
Languages Spoken
English
Topics of Expertise
Sports




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