Georges St. Pierre, the UFC Welterweight Champion, will once again find himself defending his crown. As the UFC turns 20, he will face Johnny Hendricks in a tough battle at UFC 167 on November 16.
The UFC's journey has been an interesting one since 1993. Widely feared by politicians after its inception, the promotion (and the sport of MMA in general) has gone from being a tape-trading spectacle to an international phenomenon. MMA has now become legal in 49 out of 50 states in the USA, and the promotion has branched out into several different nations.
The sport's methods have gone from fighters simply excelling at one or two arts at best to fighters being masters at multiple martial arts. The man who may have created the current expectation for mixed martial artists is none other than Georges St. Pierre, or GSP for short.
For Georges St. Pierre, his own legacy is on the line in this battle. He has been the Welterweight Champion of the World for over five years, and defended the belt eight times since that day. He is widely considered one of the top pound for pound athletes in the sport, and seems to be impossible to defeat.
His wrestling may be the best the sport has ever seen, and he seems to be capable of defeating anyone at their own game. He has out-grappled jiu jitsu experts like Shields, Penn, Serra, and Condit. He has outwrestled former Purdue wrestling captain Jon Fitch and national champion Josh Koscheck. He has out-struck notable strikers like Nick Diaz, Dan Hardy, and Thiago Alves.
For all his strengths, St. Pierre is not invincible. He has been defeated before, and the man who last beat him was able to knock him out. Since then, many have thought that GSP's kryptonite is his chin.
For Johnny Hendricks, he has a bomb-like weapon for a fist, and with his wrestling credentials he is absolutely sure he can stop GSP's takedowns and plant him on the canvas with one big shot. The former NCAA national wrestling champion (165 lbs) has knocked out eight of fifteen opponents in his career, and it is safe to say his confidence is earned.
Whether he can land the punch is another story.
UFC 167's main card will begin at 9 p.m. (Central Time). The event is co-headlined by Rashad Evans facing off against Chael Sonnen. It also features Welterweight prospect Rory MacDonald facing dynamite striker Robbie Lawler, and former title contender Josh Koscheck facing young wrestler Tyron Woodley.