UFC welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre is one of the most dominant UFC champions ever and enjoys a spot in the top three of many MMA pundit’s pound-for-pound rankings. Despite being one of the most prominent and recognizable MMA fighters currently competing, “Rush” remains ever-critical of himself and told media present at Tuesday’s UFC 124-announcement press conference that he wants to make sure he improves his performance in his next title defense against Josh Koscheck.
“I care about winning, but I care also about how I win,” St-Pierre said. “I’m not happy about happened in my last fight. I was not able to seal the deal. I know what I did wrong, and I’m the kind of guy who will never make the same mistake twice. If the same opportunity happens again, I will finish the fight. Either he taps, or if he doesn’t tap, his limb will break. Every time I fight, I learn – I get better. I’m going into that fight either to win by knockout or submission. I want to take him out. I want to finish the fight. I want to do something better than I did last time. Last time was a decision, now I want to take him out.”
Koscheck has played his usual role of the heel leading up to his rematch (St. Pierre defeated Koscheck via unanimous decision back in August of 2007) with St. Pierre and, during time spent as opposing coaches on the currently airing season of The Ultimate Fighter, Koscheck has done enough to ruffle St. Pierre’s feathers. The champion admits this but contends that it will only boost his performance come fight night.
“Yeah (he’s gotten under my skin), but this is a good thing,” “Rush” said. “If you watch my fights, the guys that have been the most arrogant with me, I’ve performed the best. Matt Serra the second time, Matt Hughes, BJ Penn – I performed the best. I finished them. That’s a good thing. When you’re under my skin, I think about you all the time. I make the scenario – I’m more mentally prepared, more motivation in the training, I feel like I have more pressure, I feel like I’m right on the edge of falling and I cannot step back. That’s when I perform the best. I’m glad that it happened like this. That’s perfect for me.”
Even though Koscheck’s consistent verbal taunting motivates him, St. Pierre isn’t taking anything Koscheck is saying personally; he looks at it as a game.
“There’s no dislike – it’s like a mind game,” St-Pierre said. “I see (Koscheck’s talk) as a game. Fighting for me is not personal. I don’t take fighting personal. I’m going to go there, I’m going to promote the fight, and after the fight I’m going to shake his hand. I plan on winning. For me, of course I don’t like to be in the same room as him. He’s arrogant and I’m about to fight him. But I’m sure if I met him in one year when we don’t have to fight each other, who knows?”
Koscheck and St. Pierre will meet in the cage to settle their non-personal differences at UFC 124 this December 11th at the Bell Centre in Montreal, Canada.