Tyron Woodley thinks the only thing capable of luring St-Pierre back to the Octagon is a fight with Conor McGregor.
After taking a four-year hiatus from MMA in 2013, Georges St-Pierre has decided to step away from the sport again, leaving fans guessing as to whether he’ll ever return to the Octagon.
St-Pierre, the former welterweight champ, choked Michael Bisping unconscious to capture the middleweight title at UFC 217 but vacated it shortly after, citing his recent diagnosis of ulcerative colitis.
‘Rush’ has hinted that he will return to the UFC once healthy, but reigning welterweight champ Tyron Woodley doesn’t think that’s the case.
‘T-Wood’ believes St-Pierre has no interest in fighting him at welterweight and believes the only way GSP makes a return is if he’s offered a mega-fight with Conor McGregor.
“He’s already captured two different titles in two different divisions,” Woodley told Marc Raimondi of MMA Fighting in a recent interview. “He’s made a fortune in mixed martial arts. He has nothing to prove. Does it make a lot of sense for him to come in and take on a very challenging, very hard-punching, fast, explosive guy who just so happens to have the best takedown defense in the history of our sport? Maybe not. I’m just that guy right now. I’m on the top and he’s had his time and I don’t think he wants to fight me.”
“I think Conor is the fight that’ll bring him out,” Woodley continued. “A smaller opponent. One hard punch, straight left that he can predict and get ready for. The takedowns are gonna be there all day for him. So I think a Conor McGregor fight is gonna provide a f*cking fortune when it comes down to money. I think that’s the fight that he’s gonna try to do.”
McGregor, 29, is the UFC’s biggest star and, since his boxing extravaganza with Floyd Mayweather Jr. last August, has insisted that fighters must now lobby for fights with him.
GSP, 36, was the promotion’s former flagship star and is still one of the biggest attractions in mixed martial arts. However, a fight with ‘The Notorious’ is very unlikely at this point, given that McGregor could be stripped of the lightweight title if he doesn’t defend it in the coming months.
As for Woodley, the 35-year-old is currently rehabilitating a shoulder injury he picked up from his championship bout with Demian Maia at UFC 214 and expects to be back in the gym within the next two months.
“I heal, I pray,” he said. “I think I’m gonna come back at the perfect time. I think the perfect fight is gonna be there for me. And I just really have faith in it.”