Dana White confirmed that a deal has finally been reached with former welterweight kingpin Georges St. Pierre to return to the UFC where he will face the current middleweight champion, Michael Bisping this summer, date and venue pending.
As one of the industry's top drawing stars of all-time, GSP could basically write his own ticket upon his return, and rumors that he would be fighting at 155, 170 and 185 pounds were all rampant. Superfights with Conor McGregor and Anderson Silva were allegedly discussed, but in the end the British middleweight won the GSP lottery and will defend against the returning legend.
There are two schools of thought here: Those that feel GSP's accomplishments warrant him skipping the line and fighting for a belt in a weight class he's never competed in, and observers who find it disrespectful that top contenders Yoel Romero and Ronaldo "Jacare" Souza are being passed over in favor of St. Pierre.
While the latter viewpoint makes sense in theory, people should accept that GSP is one of the top five biggest stars and the second greatest to ever step inside the cage. Having him fight for the MW belt increases the profile of that title and will do much bigger numbers than Bisping vs. Romero or Jacare. While MMA is a sport, the UFC is a business and their primary objective is to make money. Should Georges win, he'll bring more attention to a division full of killers but devoid of big names.
As far as the fight itself, it all boils down to how much ring rust GSP carries into the octagon. If he can compete at his previous level, look for him to handle Bisping with superior striking and octagon control. While the Brit has impressive takedown defense, GSP had the best MMA wrestling in the game and should be able to get the champ to the mat, where he always dominates the action. Bisping is game and far tougher than he's given credit for, so rather than expect a finish look for GSP to win this one by his patented method of indisputable decision.
The real story here will be what happens if GSP is successful in his quest for the championship. Will he then defend against the parade of savages waiting in line at 185 or will he start looking around at other "money fights"? I wouldn't be surprised to see both Anderson Silva and Nick Diaz jump ahead of Romero and Souza to challenge for the middleweight belt. This is a new era for the UFC. It's all about the almighty dollar sign, and the rankings mean nothing when it comes to booking title fights.
How do you feel about GSP/Bisping and how do you see winning?