”When you are in a cage, in a real fight things go 100 times faster than what you think. It’s always like that — even if you don’t have any ring rust. . . . I think he knows that, people around him know that, he’s prepared for that.,“ he said. ”But you know what, if he’s getting outboxed or something like that, his instinct is going to come back and he’s going to take Condit down.
“That’s what Condit has to be careful of. He has to put on a lot of pressure but be careful with the takedown.”
St-Pierre has defended his title six times, although his last win by decision over Jake Shields in April 2011 was less than impressive.
The champion called it a bad day at the office, an outing complicated by a blow to the eye that affects his depth perception and a reluctance to engage Shields on the ground because of his grappling skills.
“A little bit lacklustre,” Condit said of GSP’s performance.
Perhaps most importantly, Condit comes in with nothing to lose and everything to gain. He is the underdog in the champion’s backyard.
St-Pierre has to show he is over his injury. As the UFC’s biggest pay-per-view draw, he knows his employer is watching him closely, with a lucrative superfight with middleweight champion Anderson Silva hanging in the air. White told Sportsnet on Friday that if St-Pierre wins, the fight against Silva is on. The fight would be held in May, White said.
He also has been criticized for not finishing fights. In a sport that values spectacular endings, five decisions in six title defences is considered cautious rather than sexy.
Still, most like his chances Saturday.
“I’m a big fan of Georges, I train with Georges,” said lightweight Mark Bocek. “But with that being said, I think Georges has more tools. A fight is a fight but my money’s on Georges.”
Added middleweight Tom Lawlor: “I’m picking St-Pierre. I’m thinking he’s just going to be able to control Condit.”