Georges St-Pierre narrowly retained his title with a split decision victory over Johny Hendricks Saturday night in Las Vegas at the MGM Grand Garden Arena.
The judges scored the fight 48-47, 48-47 and 47-48, for St-Pierre, who at the end of the fight was bloodied, cut and dazed.
“Without a doubt it was my toughest fight,” said St-Pierre.
GSP said that he lost his memory half way through the fight. He also said he lost some vision out of his right eye.
“I need a vacation,” St-Pierre said.
When the decision was read, Hendricks dropped to his knees in shock.
“I thought I clearly won the fight,” Hendricks said. “It sucks, but I am coming back. I will get that belt. It’s mine.”
Hendricks didn’t have a mark on him when the fight was over.
“I fought hard the whole time,” Hendricks said. “I countered him. He didn’t land nothing strong on me at all.”
Hendricks threw an early big left hook to start the fight, but Georges St-Pierre ducked it and took Hendricks down. St-Pierre went for a choke, but Hendricks bounced up.
The two backed up against the cage and Hendricks landed some big elbows. Hendricks returned the favor and took GSP down, but GSP shot back up.
St-Pierre is cut above the right eye. Hendricks landed a big leg kick and St-Pierre took it well.
St-Pierre kept tying him up, but Hendricks landed to GSP’s body.
The two ended the first round trading punches and kicks. GSP is breathing hard and looking tired, but Hendricks looks bright-eyed in between rounds.
The two traded punches to start round two, and Hendricks hurt him with a heavy left hook. GSP is on dream street. His legs are wobbly and he is looking to hold on. Hendricks landed another big left hook. St-Pierre tied him up, but Hendricks keeps hitting him with knees up against the cage.
St-Pierre survived Hendricks’ flurry and he is starting to jab now.
GSP is not afraid to trade punches with Hendricks and is successfully timing him with jabs. GSP landed a big right leg kick, slowing Hendricks down. St-Pierre appears unafraid of Hendricks’ power now, even though he’s still getting hit.
The crowd is on its feet yelling “GSP” to end round two.
The two traded punches and kicks for the first minute of round three. GSP is landing almost at will with punches, although he doesn’t appear to be hurting Hendricks. GSP smacked him around for most of the round, forcing Hendricks to shoot for the takedown, but GSP quickly shot back up to his feet.
Round four begins like much of round three. Hendricks keeps loading up with the left hand, but GSP keeps ducking it.
Hendricks was loading up on a shot and GSP slipped as he was backing up. Hendricks is on top of him now
Hendricks let St-Pierre up with a little more than two minutes left in the fourth round.
The two traded punches and then tied each other up against the cage for the rest of round. St-Pierre looks tired again to end the round. He’s bleeding from the ear and eye.
With three minutes left in the fight, St-Pierre took him down. GSP trying to put on a choke, but Hendricks slipped out. GSP landed a big leg kick that pushed Hendricks back. With a minute left in the final round GSP went for a takedown, but Hendricks blocked it.
GSP went for a kimura with the clock ticking to end the 5th round.
GSP said Hendricks was “very good at countering my game plan.” St-Pierre said he hits “very hard.”
After the fight, St-Pierre addressed the retirement rumors, saying he need to go away for awhile.
“There was a lot of talk about what was going to happen,” St-Pierre said. “I need to hang up my gloves for a little bit. Thank you to everyone and the UFC.”
St-Pierre stopped short of announcing his retirement.
“I have to go away for a little bit,” St-Pierre said. “I have some personal things happening. I want to say thank you from the bottom of my heart. Thank you so much. I have to step away for a bit. That is all I can say right now. Right now I got to go away for a little bit. I am very emotional right now.”