Nov. 16, 2013 was one of the most infamous nights in mixed martial arts history.
UFC 167 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas was headlined by the one of the most controversial decisions ever handed down, as Georges St-Pierre retained his UFC welterweight title against Johny Hendricks in a split decision which provokes arguments among MMA fans to this day.
But that was just a start to the evening's weirdness. St-Pierre, who had been champion five years at that point, talked about taking a break from the sport in his post-fight interview.
That led to the most bizarre post-fight press conference the UFC has ever held. UFC president Dana White claimed St-Pierre had to be taken to the hospital before he went off on an angry rant against his champion.
Then a battered St-Pierre showed up midway through the presser, giving confused-sounding answers to questions before everyone took a long break in the middle of the presser so that St-Pierre could chat with White and UFC co-owner Lorenzo Fertitta in private.
A UFC official told MMA Fighting that UFC did not prevent St-Pierre from attending the UFC 167 post-fight press conference, but rather the organization was informed that doctors had advised St-Pierre and UFC officials that he be taken to the hospital immediately for precautionary purposes. The official said that St-Pierre declined to be transported immediately, instead preferring to attend the press conference.
St-Pierre hasn't fought in the two years since that strange evening. And on Monday's edition of The MMA Hour, he revealed that his heart-to-heart talk with White and Fertitta on that infamous night in the desert was heated indeed.
The former champ said that he was very angry that the UFC did not, at the time, support his efforts to ramp up anti-doping testing, a subject on which he was very vocal in the leadup to the Hendricks fight.
"I'm not going to tell you exactly what was said," St-Pierre said. "But I was very pissed off and I used a lot of F words. ... I was very angry, they did not support me because of the testing issues for the doping, they did not support me for the anti-doping. And I told them, why they didn't support for this, and I didn't understand it. I said ‘you guys need to wake up, because a lot of people are cheating, and stuff, and it's a freaking joke. You guys are kind of protecting these guys, and it shouldn't be like that.' I was very angry."
St-Pierre expounded upon what he said recently said on Chael Sonnen's podcast, as he confirmed he was told that he wasn't allowed at the post-fight press conference.
"I didn't know something bad was going on until they say 'you're not allowed to go to the press conference,'" St-Pierre said. "I found that it was kind of weird, I was waiting in the locker room a long time, it was like, that was kind of weird. It wasn't until afterwards that I realized what was going on."
St-Pierre went on to say the UFC took away his belt after the fight. The company typically hands out a new belt after each title match, allowing the fighter who won bout to forever commemorate their accomplishment.
"I was getting stitched up," St-Pierre said. "I don't mind the belt, it's a nice gift. Every time I win a new belt, I used to give it as a gift as people who helped me, The first one I won, I gave it to my mother, the second one I put in my workout place. All the other ones I win I give to people who helped me ... They took the belt. It's okay, its only material, importance is the memory I kept from it, nothing take away from me."
The UFC has since brought on USADA to implement an anti-doping policy. But St-Pierre believes the company knew back in 2013 that fighters were gaming the system, and implied they turned a blind eye.
"Now that I look back, I know that they knew," GSP said. "I'm not stupid, I know it's business, you spend a million dollars promoting the fight, so they lose a lot of money. it's not in their best interest to make the drug test the best possible, because they lose money if the fight gets cancelled. So I told them it might take a year, you're going to lose money for a year because a lot of your main stars, a lot of your guys, will fall and test positive, they might hurt the image of the sport. But after a year, it will put back everything straight."
(This article was updated Monday night with a response from the UFC.)