Georges St-Pierre’s return to the Octagon is imminent.
Though pen has yet to be put to paper, a report by MMAFighting.com on Wednesday indicated that St-Pierre and the UFC have agreed to terms.
Citing multiple unnamed sources, the report indicated that St-Pierre has agreed to terms for a new multi-fight deal with the promotion. A bout during the third quarter of 2017 is expected.
St-Pierre has long been teasing a return to the Octagon, and had been in the thick of negotiations with former owner Lorenzo Fertitta in 2016. The target at that time had been a bout with UFC middleweight champion Michael Bisping.
When the UFC was sold to WME-IMG for roughly $4.2 billion, things quickly turned south. Negotiations ceased.
UFC president Dana White recently breathed new life into the possibility of St-Pierre’s return, telling Canadian outlet TSN last week, “We’ve been talking to GSP for, God, over a year now. Me and GSP got everything straight between us.”
Now, however, it appears that the two sides are coming together to bolster the promotion’s star power. 2017 has been off to a rocky start for the UFC, with little star power driving early events. St-Pierre’s return coupled with the expected return of Conor McGregor in the latter half of the year would provide a much needed boost to the bottom line.
At the time of publication, it remained unclear if Bisping was still the target for St-Pierre’s return, but returning as a middleweight wouldn’t be surprising for the former welterweight kingpin, especially considering the changes to weight-cutting regulations and methods since he last fought in 2013.