UFC President Dana White dropped a bombshell recently when he revealed that UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva and UFC welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre may be on a collision course, provided the two champions successfully defend their belts in their respective upcoming bouts. White had been hesitant on making the fight over the past several years, however he told ESPN that there is not much else for the two fighters to do.
“What happened is they’re both close to cleaning out their division,” White told ESPN.com. “If Anderson beats Vitor Belfort and St. Pierre beats Jake Shields, seriously, what’s left for them?”
St-Pierre and Silva are widely considered to be the number one and two pound-for-pound fighters in the world, though who resides in which spot depends on who you ask. So it is natural then that many fans have been clamoring to see a match up between the two divisional kingpins.
“It’s a fun fight to do,” White stated.
Ed Soares, Silva’s manager, said that while Silva is open to fighting St-Pierre, it hasn’t been a fight that the middleweight champion has been looking for.
“Anderson [Silva] has never looked at me and said, ‘I want to fight that guy,'” Soares said. “But he’s told me, ‘I would fight that guy.’ Anderson’s goal is to fight the best in the world and be in the biggest fights. I think Georges St. Pierre fits into those categories.”
St-Pierre is also open to the fight, however stated that it may take up to nine months for him to get ready to move up a weight class.
“It could take as long as nine months because you have to put on the weight and then get used to the weight,” said St. Pierre. “If the fight is going to happen, I have to make it in the condition where it is fair. I’m much smaller than he is and I’m going to need time to gain weight.”
Of course, top contenders Jake Shields and Vitor Belfort stand in the way of the prospective match-up. Silva faces Belfort this Saturday at UFC 126 for his eighth attempted defense and St. Pierre will defend his strap against Jake Shields at UFC 129 on April 30th. If St-Pierre is successful against Shields, it would drastically alter the welterweight landscape, as “Rush” would stay at middleweight permanently after putting on the extra pounds.
“That’s what I love about this fight,” exclaimed White. “I’m all about legacy. That’s what matters more than the money. I love it if a guy will go up for a super fight like this. Anderson Silva has already moved up and fought at 205. For ‘GSP’ to do it, I think it’s big for his legacy.”
Thanks to Mark Wayne for contributing to this article.