When Georges St-Pierre faces Michael Bisping later this year, nearly four years will have gone by since his last official bout. So, does the former welterweight champ think ring rust will be a factor? Sort of?
Earlier this year GSP and the UFC finalized a new deal, and the promotion announced the Canadian star will fight the middleweight champ at a date yet to be determined. St-Pierre will be returning to the Octagon for the first time since November, 2013, when he got by Johny Hendricks with a split decision win.
Recently GSP participated in an online Q&A for Hayabusa, and he was asked about whether ring rust will be a concern against Bisping. Here’s what the 35 year-old had to say (quote via MMA Fighting):
“I believe in ring rust. People say there’s no such thing but I believe in ring rust. It will be an issue but I’m a very experienced man. I’m one of the guys that’s spent the most time in the octagon in the UFC, maybe the most, I’m not sure in terms of time. I think because I have a lot of experience, the more time I will spend as the fight goes, the more comfortable I will be. For me, it will be very important [at] the first second of the fight. That’s when I will have to be very aware, very careful. That will be the most dangerous moment for me because when you have ring rust, that’s the hardest part of the fight. When you just step in and the fight start, that’s where the ring rust comes from, the difficulty of adaptation. But after a few minutes, I will be back to normal.”
Fair enough. There’s no question that GSP has spent a ton of time in the Octagon, and that further, he’s participated in a lot of high stakes fights. So, one would think that after a minute or two, he’ll move into auto-pilot.
It’s going to be fascinating to see what kind of approach St-Pierre takes, and whether he can put his vaunted wrestling game into action against the bigger Bisping. Who, it should be noted, has solid wrestling defense.