Matt Hughes and Georges St. Pierre had a great trilogy of fights in the Octagon, but their rivalry died down a bit after they fought for the third and final time, with Hughes seeming to have gained a grudging respect for the man who beat him twice.
Or maybe not.
A month after the fact, Hughes has weighed in on St. Pierre's unanimous decision victory over Josh Koscheck at UFC 124, and Hughes is telling St. Pierre the same thing that St. Pierre once told him: "I'm not impressed by your performance."
"I'm going to say this, even though I'm going to piss a bunch of people off," Hughes wrote on his web site. "To me the GSP fight was boring and I'm even going to tell you why I think it was boring: because I believe GSP is on defense. Number one, he doesn't want to lose the belt and, number two, I think the UFC is paying him too much money and he doesn't want to lose that either. I don't know what's going on in his mind; but he just doesn't seem like he wants to finish anybody.
The criticism of St. Pierre not wanting to finish anybody is a common one, and there's some validity to it: St. Pierre's last five fights consist of four decision wins and one TKO in which he didn't actually finish B.J. Penn, although Penn couldn't continue after the fourth round. If what you look for is a finisher, St. Pierre isn't your guy.
Of course, St. Pierre could easily respond to Hughes by saying, "I finished you twice."
Hughes' contention that "the UFC is paying him too much money," however, doesn't have much validity. The UFC pays fighters largely based on how well they draw, and the reason the UFC pays St. Pierre so much is that he's their second-biggest pay-per-view draw, behind only Brock Lesnar. St. Pierre is paid a lot because he's really good at his job, and if the fans thought he was boring, they wouldn't keep buying his pay-per-views.
So Hughes' criticisms are likely to make St. Pierre react the same way he reacted when Hughes beat Penn at UFC 63:
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