Former two-division UFC champion Georges St-Pierre has never made it a secret that he wasn’t in love with fighting. Unlike some competitors that just want to get in there and hit people and be hit, the cerebral GSP used his incredible skill set along with his intellect to become one of the most celebrated fighters in history.
And now that he most likely hung up the gloves for good, he’s being very blunt on the subject of fighting - and he hated it.
As a guest on the Complex Sports podcast to promote his new acting gig, GSP explained how fighting and acting can be similar, but there’s nothing like the danger of fighting in the end:
“In fighting, you only get one take. If you zig when you should zag — boom! It can cost you not only a loss but it can cost you obviously cerebral damage. Damage that can cause your death. It’s very dangerous. You say ‘I play basketball, I play hockey’ but you don’t play fighting. It’s not a game. It’s a sport but it’s more than a game. It’s a different kind of thing.”
And he went on to explain why he did not like stepping into the Octagon, but did it because the thrill of victory was so gratifying:
“I don’t like the fighting. I hate it. It’s unbearable. The feeling of stress. Not knowing if you will be humiliated or you might get hurt. It’s so hard. But when you win a fight, it’s really worth it. The bigger the risk, the bigger the reward. So that’s why I did it. Not because I love to fight. I love to win.”
With that being said, he knows that fighting made him a rich and happy man, and the things that come along with it make it worthwhile:
“I was obviously very successful at it, the money, everything it brings me, the access to things that most people don’t have and the freedom when you’re a professional athlete,” St-Pierre said. “You’re free. If you train hard and you make all the sacrifices, you will have better result than if you’re lazy and don’t do your job well. That’s what I like about it.”