Home Octagon Advantage
I hope our contest winner had a good time in poutine-ville over the weekend watching Georges St-Pierre add another notch to his UFC championship belt. GSP’s unanimous decision over Nick Diaz at the Bell Center upped his record to 24 and 2 to retain his welterweight championship. Yes, it was another impressive display by the French Canadian, but would GSP be as successful as he is if he had to grapple in hostile territory?
Dana White ain’t no dummy. He knows GSP in Montreal—in fact anywhere in Canada--is an automatic sellout. So far in his 26 pro bouts, Georges has fought 11 times in Canada including 8 times in Montreal. Talk about home octagon advantage. 10 of his fights have been in Vegas, which is essentially neutral territory. His other five fights have been in cities like Sacramento and Minneapolis. But his two losses to Matt Serra and Matt Hughes occurred in Houston and Atlantic City. When Georges fights in the great white north and Vegas, he’s unstoppable. In other locales, not so much.
You know he’s a big deal when the Habs let a UFC fighter drop the puck at a recent game. Five years ago, cities around North America vilified MMA as a barbaric display of violence. Today, it’s as main stream as football and hockey. And in Canada, Georges St-Pierre is the Wayne Gretzky of his sport. The only difference is that the Great One was great wherever he played.