Trigg was a gatekeeper of sorts at the time as a veteran with solid skill. In the end, it took St-Pierre less than five minutes to lock up a submission and crank for the finish. Clearly, the future was bright for the French-Canadian. While his striking was never more than slightly above average, Sherk’s wrestling and powerful physique made him a threat to most. Of course, St-Pierre is a few steps above “most”, and showed such in the tilt by snapping Sherk’s twelve-fight winning streak and handing “The Muscle Shark” the first stoppage loss of his career. Parisyan was on his way up in the UFC when he ran into a debuting youngster by the name of Georges St-Pierre. For further perspective, Parisyan had won four straight entering the effort and picked up five more consecutive victories after the scrap including success against Chris Lytle, Matt Serra, and Nick Diaz. GSP’s potential was immediately noticeable in the fight, going on to outpoint “The Heat” with relative ease. Alves entered the Octagon at UFC 100 as one of the scariest dudes in the division. He’d won seven straight with ferocious stand-up and seemed sure to test St-Pierre’s chin at some point. However, he never got the chance, as GSP picked him apart from the outside and put Alves on the mat whenever he wanted to. The performance marked yet another lopsided win and came on a significant stage, further cementing St-Pierre as one of the greatest Mixed Martial Artists of all time. After coaching against each other on the Ultimate Fighter, Koscheck and St-Pierre locked horns a second time. Despite the time between tilts, Koscheck showed little growth and went down with similar ease. In the bout, St-Pierre turned his adversary’s eye into a swollen mess with an incredible display of boxing, primarily using his jab to ultimately end up breaking Koscheck’s orbital bone. After some smack spewed in St-Pierre’s direction, he and Penn hooked up in a rematch of their 2006 tilt. In addition to the bad blood, Penn was also lightweight champ at the time, so there was some added intrigue in that regard. St-Pierre had little trouble dismantling “The Prodigy”, eventually forcing Penn’s corner to throw in the towel after the fourth frame. Afterwards, Penn would accuse St-Pierre of greasing up to make him a harder target for submissions, also reiterating his belief the renowned champion relied on performance enhancing drugs to succeed. It was hard to know what to expect from GSP entering UFC 74. A handful of months earlier, St-Pierre suffered a shocking TKO loss to lackluster veteran Matt Serra. Instead of wilting under the pressure brought on by the manner of defeat, St-Pierre came back strong and took it to Koscheck in their clash en route to a decision win. St-Pierre’s win over Penn in 2006 was a testament to his heart. He suffered a good deal of damage courtesy of the iconic Hawaiian’s hands but remained relentless in his attack, earning a closely-contested Split Decision win in the end. Hughes and St-Pierre closed their trilogy out unexpectedly after champ Matt Serra had to pull out of a planned pairing with the former due to injury. An interim title was created for Hughes vs. St-Pierre III, setting the winner up with a guaranteed shot at Serra’s strap. Fittingly, St-Pierre ended up finishing Hughes via Armbar after the polarizing grappler clowned the Canadian’s ability to defend the technique based on having beaten him with it a few years earlier. For a long time, Shields was seen as the man to beat St-Pierre. He’d shown an ability to take out bigger, stronger wrestlers and had submission skill to boot. As had become par for the course, St-Pierre ended up earning a clear-cut decision win after beating Shields in every phase of the game despite suffering some damage from an eye-poke and ensuing strikes. The fight also drew the largest MMA crowd in North American history (55,724), making it notable for reasons outside of St-Pierre’s successful title-defense. There was no question that Fitch was the #2 welterweight in the world when he got his go at Georges. However, St-Pierre made him look like #12, picking Fitch apart with strikes and out-powering him on the ground. Fitch’s face was an absolute mess after the match-up while St-Pierre’s skill-set had never looked better. The heat between Diaz and St-Pierre was immense after an initial meeting fell apart due to the former’s lackluster PR skills (i.e. he missed some press conferences and was removed from the rumble). Diaz made it a point to ruffle St-Pierre’s feathers after beating B.J. Penn, earning a title-fight despite having lost a controversial decision to Carlos Condit prior to the pairing. Though Diaz landed a few solid shots, he failed to back up his trash-talk and was unquestionably outpointed come the collision’s conclusion. St-Pierre received a shot at redeeming himself against the only man to have beaten him (with one second remaining in the attached round no less) after stringing together five wins. Things started out competitive but quickly went St-Pierre’s way with a Superman Punch almost ending things early. In the second stanza, he landed a beautifully timed kick on a ducking Hughes and put his rival down. GSP followed up with some strikes and quickly drew the referee’s intervention, winning his first UFC title at the age of 25. Revenge wasn’t necessarily the motivation for St-Pierre’s interest in beating Serra when the two squared off a second time. Rather, he wanted to prove the first fight was a fluke but one he was thankful for based on how it had affected his competitive mentality. He also had an opportunity to make magic happen in front of countrymen in Montreal at the UFC’s first event in Canada. “Rush” dominated Serra from the get go, eventually putting him away with knees to the midsection in the second round while Serra turtled up from St-Pierre’s relentless attack. After eighteen months away from the Octagon to recover from a knee injuries including a torn ACL, St-Pierre came back to face one of the biggest tests of his career in Condit. “The Natural Born Killer” had momentum on his side with five straight wins including those over Rory MacDonald, Jake Ellenberger, Dong Hyun Kim, and Nick Diaz, not to mention a ton of tools to work with as a solid striker with power and accomplished BJJer. The clash was competitive and even saw Condit rock St-Pierre with a head kick, but GSP never wavered and kept coming until he had his hand raised at the end. To beat such a strong adversary after so much time off and a serious injury is truly as impressive a feat as GSP has ever accomplished.
The MMA gods broke the mold when they crafted
UFC welterweight Georges St-Pierre out of a stringy Canadian kid whose brush with bullying put him on the path to becoming one of the greatest fighters to ever grace the Octagon. In addition to being supremely talented, St-Pierre works his tail off in the gym and remains exceptionally humble even as the millions keep piling up. Whittling GSP’s record down to a Top 10 where wins are concerned would be a disservice despite “Rush” only having 24 total victories. In that regard it’s time to take a look back at fifteen moments of past success from St-Pierre’s career. Whether he’ll add Johny Hendricks to the list after their showdown at remains to be seen… (Photos by USA Today Sports Images) UFC 167