Esther Lin, MMA Fighting
MONTREAL -- On Tuesday, Georges St-Pierre's former manager Stephane Patry, wrote a column for the website of Canadian sports channel RDS, in which he divulged what he claimed to be the welterweight champion's secret plan. Patry wrote that on Jan. 11, while dining with St-Pierre and a few other friends at a restaurant in the city, the group discussed his fighting future. And during that time, according to Patry, St-Pierre discussed a "detailed" and "intelligent" plan that would take him possibly to the end of his career.
It would consist of only three fights: his Saturday night UFC 158 bout against Nick Diaz, one more title defense against Johny Hendricks, and then, the long-awaited super fight with middleweight champion Anderson Silva.
Of course, many things would have to go right in order for that to happen. Not only would St-Pierre have to make two successful title defenses, but ostensibly, Silva would also have to defend his belt at least once, in his upcoming match with Chris Weidman.
When asked by MMA FIghting to confirm or deny if such a plan is in existence, neither St-Pierre nor his trainer Firas Zahabi would offer any definitive confirmation or rejection.
"Listen, you have to verify the source of the person that says that," St-Pierre said when questioned.
"That's why I'm asking you," I told him.
"I don’t know," he said. "I don’t know. I don’t remember saying anything like this. I don't think so. I’m focusing on Nick Diaz right now."
Asked whether Patry -- who managed St-Pierre for five years -- was a trustworthy source for such information, Zahabi shrugged.
"I have nothing bad to say about Stephane," he said "I don’t think Georges probably said that in that way, the way it was written. I read the article. It was very strong. I don’t think Georges thinks that far ahead, honestly. He would not overlook Diaz. That’s part of the lesson he learned once upon a time against [Matt] Serra, and I think it’s so ingrained in George’s brain, he’d never make that mistake again. I don’t think you can get Georges to say that."
Yet, Zahabi also acknowledged that the Diaz-Hendricks-Silva trifecta would be a worthy exit plan for the champ, who is still just 31 years old.
Zahabi said that while he personally likes to stay away from long-term strategizing because of the uncertainty involved in professional sports, such a sendoff for St-Pierre would be "ideal."
"I think if that happened, if Georges beat [Diaz and] Hendricks and Silva, I’d tell him, ‘Retire. It’s over. There’s nothing else to do. There’s no bigger fight. Just retire. Enjoy your life,'" he said. "Ideally, the Silva fight is the last fight of his career, win or lose."
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