Is Georges St-Pierre the greatest of all time?
According to veteran MMA reporter Ariel Helwani, the answer is yes.
“I think he’s the greatest of all time now considering what he did,” Helwani said while interviewing GSP’s boxing coach, Freddie Roach, on the latest episode of The MMA Hour.
By “what he did,” Ariel is of course referring to the fact that St-Pierre came off of a four-year break from MMA, moved up in weight class, and choked out then-champion, Michael Bisping, in the third round of UFC 217’s main event last Saturday.
If you missed St-Pierre’s comeback (which could be considered the greatest comeback of all time) you can catch the end of it below:
— Flagman Ireland (@flagmanireland) November 5, 2017
It’s hard to argue with Helwani. For years, the French-Canadian Kyokushin and BJJ black belt reigned atop the welterweight division’s mountain, not only as the champion but as one of the greatest welterweights of all time. As far as pound-for-pound greats, he was usually ranked second only to Anderson Silva, who was thought to be unstoppable in the middleweight division. Silva, however, has only recently recovered from a five-fight no-win streak, so he may no longer be a threat to GSP in terms of pound-for-pound greatness.
So who does that leave?
Conor? He doesn’t have the title defenses that St-Pierre has. In fact, despite being a champion since 2015 and holding belts in two different weight classes, he has only had to defend his belt (his interim title against Jose Aldo at UFC 194) once.
What about Fedor? That might be a tougher argument, considering The Last Emperor’s win streak (he had a 27-fight no-loss streak) and his status as one of the men who helped make MMA the sport it is today.
You also have to look at all the awards Fedor has won: MMA Fighting‘s Fighter of the Decade, Sports Illustrated‘s Fighter of the Decade, just to name a few.
However, coming back after a four-year hiatus and beating the champion in the weight class above yours might weigh heavily in GSP’s favor. He has also defended his title in what some people would consider a more stacked weight class. Heavyweight divisions are usually fairly shallow, considering athletes who are well over 200 pounds tend to gravitate towards high-paying sports such as football.
And then of course there’s Jon Jones. Unfortunately, his behavior outside of the cage and frequent drug violations cancel him out from being the GOAT.
So, while it’s hard to argue for GOAT status — as MMA fans tend to disagree over what criteria should be fulfilled in order to be the greatest of all time — I think there is a strong argument for calling GSP not only the greatest active mixed martial artist today, but the greatest mixed martial artist of all time.
What do you think?
You can check out Freddie Roach’s interview with Ariel Helwani below: