UFC 154: St-Pierre vs. Condit Saturday, November 17 – 11:30 p.m. ET
Bell Centre – Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Georges St-Pierre (22-2) vs. Carlos Condit (28-5) Welterweight bout
Line: St-Pierre -300, Condit +240
Welcome back Georges St-Pierre. After a long hiatus, the welterweight champ will look to reclaim his throne from interim champ Carlos Condit as the headline bout on UFC 154’s main card Saturday night in Montreal.
St-Pierre first won the belt in 2007 in an interim capacity from Matt Hughes and won it outright against Matt Serra just four months later. Since then, he has defended it successfully six times against all the top welterweights, but he has not fought since April 30, 2011 as he has recovered from knee surgery. In the meantime, Carlos Condit earned the interim belt from Nick Diaz in February. The former WEC welterweight champ has now won five fights in a row after losing his first UFC bout to Martin Kampmann. It is difficult to bet against St-Pierre in any capacity as one of the best ever to take the Octagon. But he enters this bout as the heavy chalk, and it is always dangerous to bet on somebody coming off a long layoff, particularly somebody recovering from an injury. And Condit has proven himself against the UFC welterweight elite over the past year and is well worthy of his chance here. Take CONDIT and the help from the lines here to claim the outright belt.
St-Pierre is such a difficult foe because of the variety in his game. Of his 22 career wins, eight are knockouts, five are submissions and nine are decisions. His supreme athleticism and tactical discipline allows him to pounce on any mistake by an opponent. And if this fight goes to the final bell, the 31-year-old is likely to be the winner, as each of his past four fights have been unanimous decision victories. The Montreal native will be fighting in front of a supportive crowd here, but it remains to be seen how he has kept in shape during the layoff and if the rust will lead to his downfall on Saturday.
Unlike St-Pierre, the 28-year-old Condit vastly prefers to end a fight early. Of his 28 career wins, 13 are knockouts, 13 are submissions while just two are decisions. It’s worth noting, though, that one of those two decisions was against Diaz nine months ago. Prior to that, he earned three consecutive knockouts, something he will be capable of here with his elite striking power. At 6-foot-2, he has a three-inch height advantage and that should aid him as he seeks his moment to pounce for a striking barrage. With St-Pierre’s reputation, Condit is an understandable underdog, but with his ability to end a fight with one moment of fury, he is the play here.