Former UFC welterweight and middleweight champion Georges St-Pierre is now retired, but he still enjoys watching the sport that made him a star.
Speaking to Mathew Scott of the South China Morning Post recently, St-Pierre named the UFC fighters that have been capturing his attention of late.
“I don’t watch all the fights but I watch some of my favourite fighters. I’m still big fan,” St-Pierre said, naming Henry Cejudo, Dominick Cruz, Israel Adesanya, Jon Jones, Francis Ngannou, and Daniel Cormier as fighters he tends to tune in for.
Interestingly, contrary to his own reluctance to talk trash during his career, St-Pierre explained that he enjoys fights with a degree of drama, such as the recent welterweight title fight between Kamaru Usman and Colby Covington.
“The top welterweights, like [Kamaru] Usman and Colby Covington,” he said. “I like to watch the guys who create a lot of drama and tension. Even though I am not like that, I like to watch it just for the fun of it. It makes the build-up to the fight fun.
“It’s amazing. Look at the welterweights. There are so many guys. The sport has improved and it will continue to improve. In 10 years from now it will be even better than it is now.”
St-Pierre later elaborated on why he finds Henry Cejudo and Jon Jones so compelling.
“Look what he achieved, from Olympic gold to Golden Glove [boxing], then two belts [flyweight and bantamweight] in the UFC,” St-Pierre said of Cejudo, who recently retired. “Cejudo and guys like Jon Jones, they are creative, and that’s what’s great about this sport.”
St-Pierre concluded by heaping praise on the reigning UFC middleweight champion Israel Adesanya, who he sees as one of the smartest fighters in the game.
“I’d watched a little bit of his kickboxing and he’s a fantastic striker,” St-Pierre said of Adesanya, who realized huge success in the kickboxing ring before migrating to the Octagon. “He’s incredible. He’s a clever guy and the way he fights is very smart. I like his style. I was a big fan of Sugar Ray Leonard in boxing for the same reasons. Just a very smart guy.
“Some guys have the one-shot power that can kill someone. Some guys have the athletic ability and are smart. I like the guys that are smart. They are athletic but the brain is the most important part of their game.
“It’s like Bruce Lee said, to be a complete martial artist, one style is not enough, you have to have everything and that’s the type of fight I like to watch.”
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