I am currently on the GSP “special announcement” conference call, so I will give you live updates. Keep hitting “refresh”.
- Right now I’m on hold. The music is placid and generic, like someone on a ton of Xanax playing some interminable concerto.
- Twitter is a-buzz with speculation, and the word on the street is that some Canadian news outlet (“equivalent to ESPN”) is reporting that GSP will be stepping away from the sport for an undetermined amount of time and giving up the belt. I think it’s aliens. Has to be aliens.
- The call is underway.
- GSP: “I’ve talked to Dana and Lorenzo about it. I’ve been fighting for a very long time… I’ve decided I needed to take some time off. I understand that the UFC is a business… so I vacate my title out of respect for the other competitors.”
- He leaves the door open to possibly coming back some day, but right now, homeboy needs “a break”.
- GSP is speaking French now. My French is rusty, but I think he’s surrendering.
- “It is like every fight I am carrying a lot of weight on my shoulders… At one point, it became so heavy that I feel like I can’t carry the weight for myself.”
- And the phone call just disconnected. GSP literally retired and threw the mic down and walked away.
- Dana White announces that Johny Hendricks and Robbie Lawler will be fighting for the vacant UFC welterweight belt at UFC 171 on March 15.
- Also, GSP’s contract is frozen, not matter if he’s out for six weeks or six years. Sorry, Bellator, but hands off!
Beleaguered welterweight king Georges St. Pierre will be holding a special media conference call today at 2:20pm EST. There’s no word yet on what the call is about, but as rumors have swirled relentlessly as to whether or not GSP will soon retire, speculation as to the nature of the call has been running rampant. What do we know for sure at this point?
- GSP took a beating at UFC 167, retained his belt by the skin of his teeth, and seemed on the verge of announcing his retirement afterwards.
- TMZ likes to follow St. Pierre around and ask him about baby-mama drama.
- His dad is maybe sick, maybe not.
- He’s pretty Canadian.
- Dana White will also be on the call, but that could be to add profanity to what would otherwise be a rated-G conversation.
Check back here for updates as the news breaks. Yes, I will be on the call, listening intently and taking notes FOR YOU.
Royler Gracie is, as you might have guessed, a pretty decent jiu-jitsu guy. His MMA game, however, is only okay. Anyway, here he is talking about his first fight. Listen up, because you might learn something.
Women. You can’t live with ‘em, you can’t live without ‘em taking over an entire season of The Ultimate Fighter.
— UFC (@ufc) December 12, 2013
This past weekend in Brisbane Australia the main event of UFC Fight Night 33 saw UFC heavyweight contenders Mark Hunt and Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva put on one of the most brutal, grueling, and dramatic wars of attrition we have seen in the Octagon. Two men of that size and skill level fighting like that was among the most visceral displays of heart, courage, and stamina a sports fan will see…anywhere….ever! As the contest wore on and the drama built and built, even the most indifferent of casual fight fans surely found themselves screaming at the television, cheering for the fighter they were suddenly so invested in. Even if it were the first time someone was seeing a mixed martial arts bout they knew this was not something that happened often. This is the level of entertainment that MMA is capable of delivering. When the fight was finally over we waited for the judge’s decision with mixed feelings. Happy for the fighter we root for possibly getting such a big win, regret for the fact that someone had to lose, and relieved that these warriors made it out relatively safe. But then Bruce Buffer announced the result as a majority draw! Some felt it was a shame that neither fighter got to enjoy the thrill of victory, others were glad neither had to feel the agony of defeat. But as is often the case after such an incredible fight, fans ponder a possible immediate rematch. I say no way.