Ever since former welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre stepped away from the sport following his UFC 167 title defense against current champion Johny Hendricks, the question has been, will the 33-year-old ever return to fighting?
The Canadian superstar said he needed time to sort out some personal problems in his life, and wasn’t sure if he’d ever compete again.
“I needed this. To be happy, I needed it,” St-Pierre recently told Inside MMA.
“After my first comeback, when I fought [Carlos] Condit, I had a lot of fun. It was a great training camp. After that, not that good. And the last one, not good at all. I lost the motivation. I lost the fun of it. And I think for me, I needed to step out of it. I need to find the fire back, the need. The feeling I want is the need to compete again,” he explained.
Lack of motivation can carry heavy consequences in combat sports. When the person standing across the cage from you has trained specifically to physically damage you, you always have to be on your A game.
“Mixed martial arts isn’t a sport you can have a bad day. It’s not like a race. It’s not like hockey or a football game. If you have a bad day you can get hurt pretty bad,” said the former titleholder.
St-Pierre still believes he’s the best 170-pound fighter on the planet, and if he ever decides to come back it will be to prove that he is.
“I truly believe if I find the fun of doing it again with time, and I find the fire back, I believe I’m the best in the world. If I ever want to come back, it’s going to be to show it. But right now, I’m enjoying my time,” he said.
His sabbatical from fighting hasn’t been just a soul-searching effort to find peace of mind. St-Pierre is also recovering from knee surgery for a torn ACL.
“I had a knee surgery. My knee was already damaged. It’s something that I needed to fix. It was unstable for a long time because I hurt it a long time ago, but I never took care of it. It was just a question of time before it happened. I tore my ACL, and now I’m going to come back with two good knees. My stability will be 100-percent and it’s going to be good. So I can’t wait,” said St-Pierre.