It was announced that Georges St-Pierre would take on Demian Maia at UFC Fight Pass Invitational 6 on December 14.
Let’s take a look back at St-Pierre’s 5 greatest grappling exchanges.
Often recognized as one of the greatest welterweight champions in the history of Mixed Martial Arts (MMA), Georges St-Pierre, or GSP as he is widely known, has given fans countless memorable moments in the octagon. These are not just limited to his powerful strikes or his tactical prowess, but also his impeccable grappling skills which have contributed significantly to his legendary profile. Let’s take a look at GSP’s five greatest, most unforgettable grappling exchanges.
1. GSP vs. Matt Hughes at UFC 79
Few can forget the trilogy capper between Georges St-Pierre and Matt Hughes. Their first encounter had ended with Hughes forcing GSP to tap, but the rematch saw the pendulum swing toward the Canadian MMA superstar. In the third fight, GSP’s experience shone through as he executed an armbar that Hughes could not escape from. This convincing display of ground skills earned GSP the Interim Welterweight Championship.
2. GSP vs. Michael Bisping at UFC 217
After a four-year hiatus, expectations were high for GSP’s comeback fight against Michael Bisping at UFC 217. GSP didn’t just meet those expectations; he exceeded them. After a back-and-forth boxing exchange, GSP sent Bisping to the ground with a powerful left hook. He then showcased his incredible grappling abilities, effortlessly transitioning from a series of punches to a rear-naked choke, ending the match by submission.
The craftiness GSP shows in ground game exchanges is unparalleled, elevating him into a class of his own in the world of Mixed Martial Arts.
3. GSP vs. Jon Fitch at UFC 87
St-Pierre’s title defense against Jon Fitch showcased his unyielding resilience. He dominated the match with a fantastic display of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, grappling his way into consistently holding advantageous positions over Fitch. The moment that stands out is when GSP took Fitch down with a clean double-leg takedown, and the balance of power never shifted back.
4. GSP vs. BJ Penn at UFC 94
In this match, GSP used his grappling prowess to take the fight away from Penn. Every time Penn tried to set a rhythm with his boxing, St-Pierre would switch gears, taking Penn down, stifling his offense, and dealing out damage with his ground-and-pound tactics. The impressive display of grappling left Penn battered and exhausted, eventually leading to the fight’s stoppage.
5. GSP vs. Nick Diaz at UFC 158
As one of his most aggressive opponents, Nick Diaz presented a unique challenge for St-Pierre. Yet, GSP’s grappling mastery shone throughout. From precise takedowns to controlling top positions, St-Pierre stifled Diaz’s offense and kept him on the back foot. The climax came when St-Pierre nearly locked in an armbar, showing his grappling finesse. Although Diaz survived, it was GSP who ended up taking the victory.
GSP’s grappling brilliance has influenced an entire generation of fighters. Today, as he steps away from the octagon, we pay tribute to a true MMA legend. Yet, as we revisit these standout matches, it becomes abundantly clear that the impact of Georges St-Pierre’s grappling skills and overall career will echo through the MMA landscape for years to come.