Conor McGregor had the mixed martial arts world’s attention on Saturday morning when he posted a series of tweets about his assessment on the greatest fighters of all time. He declared that former UFC Middleweight Champion Anderson “The Spider” Silva is the greatest and that the Irishman himself is the second-best, or possibly even tied with Silva.
Notorious then said that former UFC welterweight and middleweight champ Georges “GSP” St-Pierre was number three on his personal “GOAT” list, and current UFC light heavyweight king Jon “Bones” Jones was either tied with GSP or in the fourth spot.
When explaining his thought process behind the rankings, Notorious took aim at the backend of GSP’s career. When arguing about who the greatest fighter of all time is, many people point to GSP as number one. GSP won the UFC welterweight title twice, defended it nine times, won the middleweight title in his final fight and holds a professional mixed martial arts record of 26-2.
The last time the Canadian lost was in his very first welterweight title defense in 2007 when he was TKO’d by Matt Serra. GSP avenged his loss to Serra a year later and once again became the welterweight champion.
Because of his impressive 13-fight win streak before hanging up his gloves, many have declared GSP the greatest. Conor McGregor sees it differently, however.
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McGregor Put St-Pierre at No. 3 for Multiple Reasons, Points Out GSP’s Finishing Rate
McGregor ranks himself and The Spider over GSP for multiple reasons. On Saturday morning, Notorious wrote, “GSP is in at 3. Much less array of finishes but champion status in 2. He is far behind though. Reasons = Left 170 after much damage taken+questionable decision. Never re-engaged 170lb successors. Bottled Anderson fight. Only moved when one eyed fighter presented. Played safe.”
GSP is in at 3. Much less array of finishes but champion status in 2. He is far behind though. Reasons = Left 170 after much damage taken+questionable decision. Never re-engaged 170lb successors. Bottled Anderson fight. Only moved when one eyed fighter presented. Played safe.
— Conor McGregor (@TheNotoriousMMA) May 23, 2020
In the first part of his tweet, McGregor points out GSP’s finishing rate. In 26 wins, St-Pierre won eight fights by KO or TKO and seven by submission. However, most of his finishes came earlier in his career before he was a champion.
He won the welterweight title from Matt Hughes and Matt Serra by TKO and the middleweight title from Michael Bisping by submission. But the Canadian only ever defended a title once by stoppage, and that came through TKO via corner stoppage against BJ Penn.
McGregor Cites Other Reasons for His Decision, Including GSP Never Fighting Silva
Notorious’ tweet also mentioned that GSP left the welterweight division after taking a lot of damage in a questionable decision. The Irishman is citing GSP’s split-decision win over Johny Hendricks at UFC 167 in November 2013. That was the last time St-Pierre defended the welterweight title as he vacated the belt one month after the victory.
It is GSP’s most controversial decision in his career. Many people scored the fight for Hendricks as he landed the more powerful strikes throughout the fight and battered the Canadian.
McGregor then mentioned that St-Pierre never fought in the welterweight division again. Another gripe McGregor has with GSP’s legacy is that he “bottled [the] Anderson fight.”
At the height of GSP’s career, The Spider was one weight class up defending his middleweight title as well. There were calls for years to make a superfight between the two greats, but it never materialized.
McGregor said that GSP “Only moved when [a one-eyed] fighter presented [himself].” He moved up to the middleweight division and challenged then-champ Michael Bisping. GSP captured the crown by third-round submission at UFC 217 on November 4, 2017. This was GSP’s final fight, which came four years after his narrow victory over Hendricks.
Michael Bisping is a legend. pic.twitter.com/fg1TG4SwnO
— Borrachinha Depot (@FullContactMTWF) October 3, 2019
In the tweet, the Irishman is referring to Bisping’s eye injury. Bisping was plagued with it for years and he now claims he fought with a prosthetic eye.