UFC welterweight champ Georges St-Pierre was one of the first fighters to come out in support of newly-crowned middleweight king Chris Weidman, stating the 29-year old New Yorker would not only beat Anderson Silva at UFC 162 but finish him as well. As history has since shown, St-Pierre’s prediction proved to be accurate after Weidman stopped Silva with strikes in the second round of Saturday night’s showdown.
While St-Pierre was impressed by what he witnessed – even surprised to an extent – he has now gone on record as saying he still views “The Spider” in the same light as he did before the defeat.
“I predicted Chris Weidman would win but I didn’t think he’d win the way he did,” admitted St-Pierre in an interview with Poker Listings. “I thought he would win with ground and pound or some kind of submission but he won with a beautiful knockout standing up.”
Silva was indeed rendered defenseless, but St-Pierre feels the situation wasn’t necessarily indicative of his overall abilities so much as a singular occurrence in one outing.
“I think Silva just got caught, said St-Pierre, adding, “I still think he’s the best in the world.
“Silva’s very good at getting into his opponent’s head so I don’t think it’s a lack of respect. It’s more that he plays mind-games with his opponents,” he continued. “It almost worked this time but he got caught. It doesn’t mean that it was a bad strategy for him.”
“You always recognize a great champion by how they come back from a loss and I know Silva came back from a loss and adversity before,” GSP concluded. “He’s the greatest of all time for sure.”
St-Pierre suffered a similar defeat to Matt Serra in 2007, losing by knockout despite being seen as a pound-for-pound great entering the affair. “Rush” then went on to win his next eleven efforts including a dominant win over Serra in their eventual rematch.