Is the UFC moving on from Georges St-Pierre? It certainly seems that way with a title fight taking place in Australia that doesn’t involve him.
It appears that the UFC isn’t willing to wait around for Georges St-Pierre while he battles with colitis. The new UFC middleweight champion was contracted to fight Robert Whittaker after he defeated Michael Bisping, but his medical issues have led him to say he might never be able to fight at middleweight again. This left the UFC in a tough position, and they didn’t take long to go in a different direction.
According to MMA Fighting, a title bout between Whittaker and former champion Luke Rockhold will headline UFC 221 on February 11th.
It’s unclear if the bout will be just for the interim title or if the winner will be promoted to full champion. Nonetheless, Rockhold will get what he has been demanding for months now.
Whittaker (19-4, 10-2 UFC) claimed the interim title when he defeated Yoel Romero at UFC 213 in July. He is on an eight-fight win streak overall.
Rockhold (16-3, 6-2 UFC) defeated Chris Weidman for the full version of the 185-pound title at UFC 194 in December 2015, but dropped the belt to Bisping in his first defense in June 2016. After being out for a while due to injury, he came back to defeat former WSOF champ David Branch in September.
UFC 221 goes down on February 11th (February 10th in North America) at the Perth Arena in Perth, Australia.