Earlier this month, following a conversation with UFC president Dana White, former welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre said he was “positive” that a fight between he and middleweight kingpin Michael Bisping would eventually materialize.
A bout between the pair had been announced back in March, just prior to UFC 209. Although a date was not specified at the time, White identified July 8th as the target. Subsequent disagreements between St-Pierre and the promotion regarding the date would later lead White to scrap the fight, however.
While Bisping and St-Pierre have continued to express an interest in tussling later this year, White has publicly downplayed the possibility of the fight being put back together any time soon. In private, though, St-Pierre claimed White has not been so adamant in his dismissal of the idea.
“I talked to Dana a few days ago,” Georges told TSN in Canada. “I tried to convince him that it was a good thing that if I come back it needs to be a situation where I have a lot to risk, but I need to have something that I can gain from it. So big risk, big reward. Fighting Michael Bisping, that’s what it gives me. He is the one that has the most wins in UFC history, he just beat my record by one. But if I beat him…I know Michael will retire if he loses. Michael hasn’t fought for more than a year. Me, I haven’t fought for…it will be four years.”
“I think it’s the perfect fight, I think it’s a fight that everybody wants to do. He has been saying a lot of stuff about me, like I was postponing the fight because I was afraid but I’m not afraid. The real reason is the eye injury, I had a surgery done. And if he wants to do, I am ready to make him eat his words.
“At the end of the conversation [with Dana], he said, ‘Look, we’ll figure it out, we’ll see what happens,’” added St-Pierre. “I’m positive, I think it will happen after the conversation I had with him.”
However, on a recent episode of his podcast, ‘Believe You Me’, Bisping gave an account of a recent conversation he had with White and it painted a very different picture than St-Pierre’s did.
“Right now, I’m still looking at GSP,” Bisping began. “I had a conversation with Dana White last week on the phone, he made me an offer — not for a fight — I will not reveal on here what it was but he made me an offer for something. I said what about GSP? He said ‘GSP does not want to fight.’
“I said well that’s not what I’m hearing. I said I’m hearing he wants to fight me, his coach told me that he wants to fight me. He said ‘if I could make the GSP fight happen, I’ll make it happen but he doesn’t want to fight you, I’m telling you.’
“So I don’t know what the f—k is going on out there(via Fox Sports).”
Confused but still determined to land the biggest and most lucrative fight of his winding 13-year career, Bisping continued:
“GSP, if you’re listening to this, make the call. I’m down. We did the press conference. I’m in 100 percent. Failing that, I will have to fight the number one contender. That is my duty as the champion but we’ve had the press conference for me versus GSP.”
“For me, I’m still invested in that fight and I want to be part of a big fight and then I’ll take on the number one contender. But if we don’t make this fight soon, I’m going to be forced to move on because that’s what I have to do, that’s my duty.”
At present, Bisping is sidelined with a knee injury and St-Pierre is struggling with an eye issue, but both men are projecting winter returns. Will they meet each other once fully healthy? Right now, that’s anyone’s guess.