Wonderboy: I would hate to fight ‘inspiration’ GSP

Posted: 27/02/2017 in MMA, Sports
Tags: , , , , , ,

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Stephen Thompson has mixed feelings about Georges St-Pierre’s return to the UFC.

The former welterweight champ recently ended a three-year layoff, with president Dana White positing an immediate title shot as one of several potential comeback bouts, a precarious proposition for Thompson.

“Wonderboy” – who’s sparred with GSP at vaunted Montreal camp Tristar in the past – is set to challenge Tyron Woodley for the 170-pound strap in a rematch in under a week’s time at UFC 209, and could very well have to face his friend and idol should he exit the Octagon with the belt around his waist. Needless to say, Thompson isn’t exactly salivating at the prospect.

“I would hate (fighting him). I would hate the day where I would have to step out there with a guy who inspired me first in kickboxing to (try) mixed martial arts. He was my inspiration,” Thompson recently told Damon Martin on the Fight Society podcast. “He’s a good friend of mine. That would be a hard one to be honest with you just emotionally because he’s a good bud. But you never know.”

Prior to his first bid to dethrone Woodley at UFC 205, Thompson took a lopsided decision over St-Pierre’s teammate and friend Rory MacDonald at UFC Fight Night 89. But as daunting as temporarily shelving his relationship with GSP for a would-be matchup may be, the 34-year-old admitted he’d put their bond aside if needed – however reluctantly.

“You never know what the UFC’s going to bring. Of course, I know we’re both businessmen and professionals. It’s kind of like with Rory (MacDonald), I’ve got a little better relationship with Georges than I did with Rory. I don’t know. We’ll just have to see. I would not want to just because of the relationship we have, but it is business.”

He may be dreading the possibility of fighting the living legend, but count Thompson among the legions of fighters and fans alike chomping at the bit to see if St-Pierre can return to the top of the heap. While time isn’t exactly on the 35-year-old’s side, Wonderboy is giving St-Pierre the benefit of the doubt.

“I am kind of excited that he’s back. I know he’s always been training, always evolving. Everybody thinks that Georges St-Pierre in the past three or four years is maybe not training at all but this guy, he’s a martial artist, a lifelong martial artist. He’s always training and evolving.

“He is the best welterweight of all time and I’m glad he’s back out there. I’m glad he can make things work with the UFC. Question is if he still has it. You can train all you want but it is a little different when you’re stepping out there. But he’s a very intelligent guy, got good people around him, so we’ll see.”

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