Former UFC welterweight and middleweight champion Georges St-Pierre says the chances of his returning to fight Khabib Nurmagomedov are “incredibly low.”
St-Pierre and Nurmagomedov have both expressed interest in fighting one another in the past, but in 2020, when St-Pierre is almost 40 years old, and the COVID-19 pandemic continues to create logistical challenges, it’s starting to look like a long shot.
In a recent interview with BT Sport, St-Pierre conceded that the chances that he’ll end his retirement to fight Nurmagomedov are “incredibly low.”
“It’s tempting and I still train hard,” St-Pierre explained (via CBS Sports). “Now it’s COVID, so of course it’s different. It’s illegal to train combat sports here but I always train hard and I still get it. I feel I am at my best but the fighter is always the last one to find out when your time is up.”
While St-Pierre acknowledges the idea of a fight with Nurmagomedov is compelling, he sees a number of hurdles in terms of getting the deal done—particularly if the fight is to occur in the 155-pound lightweight division, where Nurmagomedov is the champ.
First and foremost, he doesn’t believe the UFC will be interested in allowing him to challenge Nurmagomedov for the lightweight title if he intends to retire again thereafter.
“I don’t know,” St-Pierre explained. “It takes three parties to make a fight. It takes one opponent, another opponent and it takes the organization, as well. I don’t know if the organization would want that. I run away with the welterweight, I run away with the middleweight and they assuredly don’t want me to run with the lightweight.”
St-Pierre also has doubts about his ability to cut down to the 155-pound limit for lightweight championship bout at almost 40 years old.
“I’m 39 years old and I don’t think I can go 155 without my performance being compromised,” St-Pierre said.
“I believe he is the best fighter right now on the face of the planet,” St-Pierre added. “Khabib is fighting at 155 but I believe he is heavier than me and walks around at a heavier weight. He is younger than me and can fluctuate whenever. I was never a big fan of weight cutting because I always thought of long-term consequences.
“Physically, I’m always very fit and don’t have a lot of water addition and fat. I’m at my natural walking around weight. It’s different for everybody but I think Khabib walks around heavier than me and is 185 or close to 200 and I’ve never been close to 200 in my life.”
Do you think we’ll ever see Georges St-Pierre and Khabib Nurmagomedov fight?