Luke Rockhold believes Georges St-Pierre is looking for a way out of his obligation to defend the UFC middleweight title.
After capturing the UFC middleweight title with a win over Michael Bisping at UFC 217 last Saturday, Georges St-Pierre remains unsure about his next move. Right now, he plans on taking a vacation for a few weeks before making a decision if he will unify the title against Robert Whittaker.
But this is not how Luke Rockhold looks at it. In an interview with Submission Radio, the former middleweight champion says St-Pierre might just be looking for a way out of his contractual obligations as the current title-holder.
“Unfortunately, it sounds like we have a hold-up and it’s gonna take some time to iron out what’s next,” Rockhold said. “So, this is my whole point, this is what I talked about beforehand, GSP saw a weakness in Bisping and it was a one-and-done kind of thing. I know he’s contractually obligated to defend his belt, but as you and we all heard on the mic, he’s backtracking and he’s trying to find his way out, seemingly.”
Rockhold adds that he is ready to step in if St-Pierre remains undecided, as he has UFC 221 in Perth in his sights.
“I’ve talked about it with the UFC and it’s potentially on the table, but I’m not going out there to fight for the interim title,” Rockhold said. “GSP needs to figure it out and he needs to move on, get out. And really, like I said before, Robert Whittaker was the real champion before. Bisping lost that title in my eyes a long time ago when he decided to fight guys outside the top ten, and welterweights for that matter.”
“You know, he earned it, he got the title, but Whittaker’s been the man for the last year or so,” he said. “You know, he’s fought Jacare, fought Yoel Romero, he’s fought some top contenders, and that’s what it takes to be a champion. So, in my eyes, Whittaker’s the champ.”
“I’ll be ready to go to Perth, it’s a matter of how this whole thing plays out and we’ll see.”
Rockhold got himself back on the winning track via a second-round stoppage against David Branch last September in Pittsburgh.