Wednesday March 20,2013 : St. Pierre Looked Better Than Ever Versus Diaz At UFC 158
UFC Welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre is one of the most dominant pound-for-pound fighters in the world. His successful title defense against Nick Diaz only reaffirmed that. GSP dominated the latest No. 1 contender to challenge him for the championship belt with a unanimous decision win in the main event at UFC 158. St. Pierre has now successfully defended his title on eight-straight occasions, and has put together 11-straight wins overall to climb to the top of the UFC ladder. Those numbers alone are impressive enough, but any fan that watched the way the champion dominated his latest fight have an even better appreciation for how good he really is at this point.
Many expected that St. Pierre would dominate the fight with his takedowns, using his superior wrestling skill to control the tempo and not give Diaz the chance to land that one potential knockout blow. However, GSP decided to school Diaz at his own game as well, landing jab after jab along with nine takedowns in the fight. A couple of those jabs actually looked capable of knocking the challenger out, and it was impressive enough to see the way that Diaz was able to withstand the punishment that he took. All three judges scored the fight 50-45 in St. Pierre’s favorite, illustrating just how much he dominated the fight.
It’s hard to pinpoint any one moment of the main event as the highlight of the fight, especially considering how loud the crowd was when St. Pierre first came out. The hometown crowd in Montreal, Quebec was deafening as GSP made his way out to the Octagon, but it didn’t hold back every time that the champion landed a punch or takedown throughout the tilt. In the end, St. Pierre’s hand was raised and it was two unanimous decision wins in a row for the champion following his return from an ACL tear. There is no doubt that GSP looked both quicker and stronger in the Octagon, and he was also much more aware after shaking off the rust from his absence in his initial bout against Carlos Condit.
So what’s next for the UFC Welterweight champion? A title defense against another UFC 158 winner in Johny Hendricks seems like the most likely next step, with the lingering possibility of a super fight with UFC Middleweight champion Anderson Silva still on the backburner. Silva is scheduled to meet Chris Weidman in July, and the door is wide open for what lays beyond that. GSP will face his toughest challenge yet from Hendricks in his next title fight, and there is no guarantee that he will be able to beat him. However, from what we have seen so far, St. Pierre has improved in each of his two successful title defenses since returning from an ACL tear, and if that trend continues he will be even better by the time he does battle with Hendricks.