No matter how many times Georges St-Pierre reminds the media he’s happily retired, the much-talked-about Khabib-GSP superfight always finds its way into the headlines.
St-Pierre was willing to come out of retirement to challenge Nurmagomedov last year but, according to ‘Rush’, the UFC didn’t want to risk ruining their investment in Khabib — so they put a stop to the matchup and told GSP to stay retired.
Nurmagomedov’s manager Ali Abdelaziz, however, claims he can make the fight happen. Abdelaziz says he was instrumental in the booking of St-Pierre vs. Michael Bisping at UFC 217 and that he can also put the wheels in motion for Khabib vs. GSP — St-Pierre need only pick up the phone.
“He’s the greatest fighter of all time. And he’s a very good friend of mine, I love Georges,” Abdelaziz told ESPN’s Brett Okamoto in a recent interview (h/t South China Morning Post). “Khabib is my brother, I’m very close with him. If Georges St-Pierre wanted to fight, it’s very simple: we can make this happen.”
“You don’t think I can make this fight? In 2017, Georges St-Pierre wanted to fight Michael Bisping for the middleweight title. Dana White didn’t believe him, and I got involved as a friend. I had to convince [UFC matchmaker] Sean Shelby to convince Dana to meet Georges. Georges flew to Las Vegas. I didn’t manage him, I was helping him as a friend. He had dinner with me, Sean Shelby, and Dana. Dana was like, ‘This guy don’t wanna fight’, but then 30 minutes into the conversation, Georges went to the bathroom. Dana said, ‘He’s out of his mind, he’s crazy’.
“Georges is out of his mind, he’s a little bit nutty. Georges started getting up, shouting, walking around the table and just got very emotional. He always have a chip on his shoulder, it’s real. Dana sees the reality.”
“If Georges wants this fight to really happen, he has to do three things: pick up the phone and call me, he can call Dana directly. Dana White respects Georges St-Pierre, he likes him a lot. Dana White doesn’t like too many people. Then he [St-Pierre] have to make 155 pounds, and he have to communicate.”
Khabib was expected to defend his lightweight title against Tony Ferguson at UFC 249 but the undefeated Dagestani was forced to withdraw from the bout due to coronavirus-related travel restrictions in Russia. Nurmagomedov has always been interested in a legacy fight against St-Pierre but the Russian seems to have moved on from the bout in recent weeks.
St-Pierre, 38, announced his retirement last year. The former two-division world champion is widely considered one of the greatest fighters of all time.