Canadian mixed martial arts sensation Georges St. Pierre will be sidelined for at least six months with a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee. The ACL tear makes 2011 one of the worst in the career of the UFC Welterweight Champion as he’s had to pull out of two fights due to injuries. However, the native of Montreal said he’s going to come back as soon as possible and in the best shape of his life.
St. Pierre is one of Canada’s most popular athletes and also has a strong following in the U.S. He headlined UFC 129; the MMA organization’s biggest ever show, in April when he fought at the Rogers Centre in Toronto in front of 55,000 fans. He defended his title for the eighth consecutive time in that night against Jake Shields, but hasn’t been able to fight since.
Shields damaged St. Pierre’s eye during the bout and it took several weeks to heal. The Canadian was then scheduled to take on Nick Diaz in October at UFC 137, but Diaz went missing in action from a press conference and was taken off the card by UFC boss Dana White and replaced with Carlos Condit. St. Pierre then had to pull out of the fight due to a strained medial collateral ligament in his left knee and the fight was postponed until February.
Diaz then defeated B.J. Penn in a new main event on the card and was renamed the number one challenger for St. Pierre’s belt after accusing St. Pierre, of faking his injury. St. Pierre was slated to take on Diaz on Feb. 4 2012 at UFC 143, which is the annual Super Bowl show. But now that he’s out from six to nine months Diaz will take on Condit in the main event.
Dr. Sebastien Simard said St. Pierre hurt his knee while wrestling in training recently, but the pain didn’t go away. He then had an MRI which confirmed the champion had completely torn his ACL and had a small tear in his internal meniscus on his right knee. Simard said St. Pierre will have to have his knee surgically reconstructed and there’s no way he can possibly fight in his current condition. He added that he should be able to return to the octagon in between six and nine months as long as there aren’t any complications following the operation.
St. Pierre said he was on top of the world earlier in the year, but now he’s in a downward spiral that just seems to keep getting worse. But he said a true champion is able to deal with adversity and overcome his problems, which is what he aims to do. When he does finally fight again, it’ll be about a year and a half between fights. Because of this, St. Pierre will temporarily give up his championship and the Diaz vs Condit fight will be for the interim crown. It’s believed St. Pierre will fight the winner when he returns.