St. Pierre, who faces Jake Shields tonight at Rogers Centre in the main event of UFC 129, received a hero's welcome at the weigh-in while Shields was roundly booed before the crowd burst into chants of "GSP!" as Shields hit the scale. Shields was soundly jeered throughout the day while St. Pierre was wildly cheered when he first entered the arena for the Super 7 Q&A.
Featherweight champion Jose Aldo received nothing more than a polite reaction from the crowd and, in fact, the people behind me thought he was the one that beat Ben Henderson at WEC 53, not Anthony Pettis. The "observations" from many people around me left me shaking my head at points.
Randy Couture received a huge reaction as he prepares for his retirement fight with Lyoto Machida. Machida also was warmly received by the crowd.
If the reaction at the weigh-in was any indication, expect the Spike TV battle between Rory MacDonald and Nate Diaz to get a huge reaction inside Rogers Centre tonight. MacDonald was loved while Diaz received a mixed reaction, but people definitely got loud when he came out.
Before the weigh-in, the UFC hosted all seven of its champions for a Q&A session with Joe Rogan. St. Pierre and Aldo had to duck out early, leaving the show to be carried by the Anderson Silva Comedy Hour. Silva, who definitely surprised the crowd by speaking English for a prolonged period of time and answering all his questions in it, was the star of the show for his reactions to some of the questions.
Rogan tried to stir things up by asking many of the fighters if they'd fight the champion in the weight classes nearest their own. This went unchecked until light-heavyweight champion Jon Jones called him out on it. The session was light-hearted and was definitely a unique and fun opportunity to see some of the best fighters the company has to offer on stage together.
Prior to entering the building, UFC Fight Club members were herded in in one line. People at the door weren't even checking if people were apart of the Fight Club, just letting them in. Everyone was handed a ticket by the arena staff which was them scanned when you entered the building. Then when you entered the arena area, the staff was handing out full-size UFC 129 event posters to everyone and selling programs for $20.
The crowd packed the sections of the arena without obstructed views, and people were standing at the top of the arena bowl, three or four deep at spots, jostling for position to see the stage.
Outisde Ricoh Coliseum, some entrepreneurs were selling St. Pierre headbands for $5 and seemed to be making a very good profit on their product, as they even had a pink version for the ladies.
The UFC Fan Expo also seemed to be a hit, as many fans were walking around with bags from the expo.
Overall, if the weigh-in was any indication, tonight's event should blow the roof off Rogers Centre.