Former UFC welterweight and middleweight champion Georges St-Pierre has been targeted by UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov for a potential superfight in April 2021, but St-Pierre hasn’t yet stated whether he’s legitimately interested in returning to UFC action.
According to one of the fighter’s representatives, though, the UFC legend definitely has “some level of interest” in returning to the UFC to face Nurmagomedov next year in a massive megafight.
That rep, Marquel Martin, wouldn’t confirm or deny talks between St-Pierre and the UFC about the superfight, but he did say there was interest from all the necessary parties.
Will GSP Return?
St-Pierre revealed a “nagging wrist injury” on Tuesday that could potentially keep the 39-year-old from taking that or any other comeback fight.
St-Pierre posted some videos of himself lifting weights on Instagram with a caption that read, “Practicing my lifts despite a nagging wrist injury.”
St-Pierre hasn’t competed in MMA since defeating Michael Bisping at UFC 217 in 2017. That stunning win was his first fight in four years, which is something the MMA legend would similarly be trying to accomplish by taking on Nurmagomedov in 2021.
Nagging Injuries Are Common in Combat Sports
Similar to NFL football players, professional fighters are accustomed to dealing with nagging injuries that persist through their training camps and into the fights.
That’s just part of the sport. In fact, almost every single professional MMA fighter or boxer that competes at the highest levels of those sports spends much of their time recovering from the incredible amount of turmoil suffered for the sake of the career.
Sometimes nagging injuries can spell doom for a fighter. Other times a fighter can navigate the specific situation without it having too much of an impact.
One popular example of the latter was 50-0 boxing champion Floyd Maywather Jr., who notoriously struggled with hand injuries during his career but still managed to retire undefeated.
Strong Case For Khaibib vs. GSP Happening Next Year
There’s a strong case for St-Pierre being able to take the fight against Nurmagomedov next year.
The most obvious reason it seems likely is that St-Pierre will have enjoyed almost four years of rest and recovery from the rigors of fighting.
Better yet, St-Pierre has remained active in other fitness endeavors and appears to be in as good of shape as ever right now.
Both those things point to the fighter being able to gear up for a big fight one more time in his life.
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Why GSP Might Not Return to the Octagon
But there’s a good case to be made that St-Pierre might never return to the Octagon.
First, while things appear to be slowly moving in that direction, nothing is actually set in stone for April 2021.
Heck, Nurmagomedov hasn’t even gotten past his next opponent Justin Gaethje yet, so that’s a huge domino that has to fall before the hype machine can begin rolling at a faster pace.
Second, St-Pierre hasn’t accepted the fight. Sure, he didn’t outright dismiss it like he did when UFC welterweight Kamaru Usman called him out, but he also didn’t state that he’s definitely down to rumble.
Finally, nagging injuries such as the one St-Pierre disclosed via Instagram about his wrist, are just something that happens as a person continues to age. That’s especially true for a person who devoted his life to unarmed combat.
So maybe St-Pierre could step back into a cage fight and be as good as ever against the undefeated lightweight champion Nurmagomedov next year.
Or maybe St-Pierre’s “nagging” injury is just the beginning of the long, slow slide down to the land of mere mortals that all great MMA and boxing champions eventually must suffer as age finally catches up to them.
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