Georges St-Pierre respects Michael Bisping for quick turnaround, questions UFC for allowing it

Updated: December 7, 2017

Georges St-Pierre is taking some time off after his fight with Michael Bisping at UFC 217, but “The Count” didn’t allow himself the same luxury.

Just three weeks after being knocked down and choked out by St-Pierre (a loss that cost Bisping the UFC middleweight title), Bisping was back in action at UFC Shanghai on Nov. 25. The booking materialized when Anderson Silva was failed a USADA drug test and was removed from his main event bout vs. Kelvin Gastelum.

Fighting on short-notice ended poorly for Bisping, as he was knocked out by Gastelum 2:30 into the opening round. That outcome raised the question of whether it was wise for Bisping to take the fight so soon after being finished by St-Pierre.

On Wednesday, GSP told TSN that he understands what motivated Bisping to get back in the Octagon so soon, while also questioning whether officials should have prevented him from taking such a risk in the first place.

“Medically, that was not the right thing to do,” St-Pierre said. “However, if he would have succeeded – you know, he took a big risk and me, I can accept that because he took a big risk – if he would have succeeded he would have been like a hero. It’s like, ‘Oh my God, he just lose the title and then he come back with no preparation, boom, wins a fight.’ I think he tried to do something that was very, very risky, but at the same time if he would have achieved it, it would have been a big reward for him. So I can respect that. For him, I can respect the idea that he had, the goal that he had doing it.

“However, I believe for the UFC, that was not good to let an athlete fight after getting concussed in a fight for the world title and then getting choked out. I don’t think it was medically a good thing for the UFC. But for Michael, as a fighter, I understand his point of view. He wanted to turn around the table and he wanted to do something that was special and I can understand that because coming back after four years myself, it was a lot of risk, and I wanted to do something special and I succeeded, I’m happy I did it. Unfortunately for Michael, it failed. But I can respect that from a man.”

St-Pierre’s win over Bisping came in his first fight since November 2013. The long-reigning welterweight king took a four-year break from the sport to recover both physically and mentally before coming back at 185 pounds and winning the middleweight title from Bisping. St-Pierre is currently sidelined as he deals with a bout of ulcerative colitis.

See the full TSN interview below: