It was a main event that lived up to its billing and then something. Georges St-Pierre, the absent welterweight king, had to return not just from time off and debilitating injury. He also had to face the unfortunately unheralded Carlos Condit. And not simply any Condit, but one who'd had almost a year to prepare. If this was going to be a moment where GSP fell from grace (almost understandably) this was going to be.
Through five grueling rounds, St-Pierre seemed to return to form. He pressured a capable Condit on the feet and used superior wrestling with top control to take a unanimous decision. But even when he won a round, he never ran away with it. And in the third round, it all nearly came unraveled as GSP's hands were down while Condit finished an extended striking combination that culminated with Condit's shin against St-Pierre's skull. Condit tried mightily to finish him, but it wasn't to be. GSP was and is simply too good and won all the championship rounds on all the judges scorecards.
In the co-main event. Johny Hendricks positively blew past Martin Kampmann in the most dramatic moment of the event outside of the tense main event. What's next for him is unclear, but a new top contender affirmed his place in dynamic fashion.
The rest of the main card was less interesting or noteworthy, at least as far as high marks are concerned. But it hardly matters. A thrilling and frankly historic main event between the two best welterweights in the world turned out to be everything we'd all hoped it would be. Don't believe me? Listen to the UFC pros on Twitter who share my opinion.
HOMINICK'S LAST STAND?
I gave it my best. I truly appreciate the support I have always received from everyone. Thank you all!— Mark Hominick (@MarkHominick) November 18, 2012
SAKARA'S RABBIT PUNCHES
Sarah Kaufman (@mmasarah) November 18, 2012
Did Sakara f*** up? Yes, but the ref also did a sh*tt* job by not give a warning... How the hell he didn't see those illegal blows?— Vinny Magalhaes (@VinnyMMA) November 18, 2012
Back the head I don't know about the disqualification unless ref was yelling at him back of the head but hope they rematch— Roy Nelson (@roynelsonmma) November 18, 2012
LAWLOR > CARMONT
That score is a travesty...@filthytomlawlor won all 3 rounds.— Joe Lauzon (@JoeLauzon) November 18, 2012
Who cares! They both lost that fight.— Dana White (@danawhite) November 18, 2012
HENDRICK'S LEFT HAND
I would not wanna get in the vicinity of that left hand, he swings I run the other direction...Wrestling did not decide that fight #UFC154— Benson Henderson (@BensonHenderson) November 18, 2012
THE INCREDIBLE MAIN EVENT
Awesome fight, both guys, dont remember a time when GSPs face was this bloody, maybe BJ Penn 1— Brian Stann (@BrianStann) November 18, 2012
Great performance by both guys but great determination by @georgesstpierre— Royce Gracie (@realroyce) November 18, 2012
Urijah Faber (@UrijahFaber) November 18, 2012
Jamie Varner (@jamievarner) November 18, 2012
GSPis a natural 170er makes no sense for him to fight A.S. who weighs no less than 215 off season.— Vinny Magalhaes (@VinnyMMA) November 18, 2012
WRESTLING decided that GSP/Condit fight...just sayin...#UFC154— Benson Henderson (@BensonHenderson) November 18, 2012
I am not impressed by your performance @georgesstpierre— nick diaz (@nickdiaz209) November 18, 2012
GSP VS. SILVA?
An unpredictable, creative and smart striker like Anderson Silva is not a smart fight for GSP.— Siyar The Great (@SiyarTheGreat) November 18, 2012