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'I don't think he's there yet' - Stephen Thompson thinks comparisons between Kamaru Usman and GSP are premature

Kamaru Usman (left); Georges St-Pierre (center); Stephen Thompson (right)
Kamaru Usman (left); Georges St-Pierre (center); Stephen Thompson (right)
Johny Payne
ANALYST
Modified 25 Feb 2021
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Stephen Thompson believes that the comparisons between Kamaru Usman and GSP are premature. Thompson suggested that Usman has a long road ahead of him if he wants to match GSP’s legacy in MMA.

Georges St-Pierre is widely regarded as one of the greatest combat sportspersons of all time. St-Pierre is a former UFC welterweight champion. GSP has the most number of wins in UFC welterweight title fights, with 12, and the most consecutive UFC welterweight title defenses with nine.

Additionally, Georges St-Pierre, who had retired from MMA in 2013, returned to the sport and captured the UFC middleweight title four years later. GSP defeated then-UFC middleweight champion Michael Bisping via third-round submission at UFC 217 in November 2017 to win the belt.

On that note, certain sections of the MMA community have lately engaged in speculation as to whether the current UFC welterweight champion Kamaru Usman is as dominant, or perhaps even more, than GSP. Usman is coming off a hard-fought third-round TKO win over Gilbert Burns at UFC 258 (February 13th, 2021).

On an edition of MMA Fighting’s What The Heck, the No. 5-ranked UFC welterweight, Stephen Thompson, weighed in with his thoughts on the comparisons between Kamaru Usman and Georges St-Pierre. Stephen Thompson stated:

“Yeah, he did, man,” Stephen Thompson said, concurring that Kamaru Usman traveled a difficult road to the UFC welterweight title. “But, I mean, when you’re comparing yourself to someone like Georges St-Pierre, who’s defended the (UFC welterweight) title like what, 12 or 13 times? And he (Usman) has defended it what, 3 times, I think? Yeah, I think it’s a little too soon to be putting him up there with GSP. But he is on the way. Of course, I think everybody is on the way, you know, to try and get there. But at this point, he’s doing a great job. His last three performances have all been, they’ve all been just ridiculous; just like, ‘Man, this dude is getting better every time I see him’.”
Stephen Thompson continued, “Yeah, is he there? No. I don’t think he’s there yet. Now when you’re comparing yourself to GSP, you’ve got a long road ahead of you right there, sir – Because, you know, GSP, he’s fought some tough dudes and defended the title 12 times. I think it was 12 times. 12 times, that’s ridiculous, man, crazy. But, yeah, man I don’t think he’s quite there…And then he (Georges St-Pierre) comes out of retirement and wins the 185, you know, title, which is crazy, man. The guy’s the GOAT (Greatest Of All Time) for sure.” (*H/T Sportskeeda for the transcription)

Stephen Thompson asserted that GSP is the GOAT, reiterating that Kamaru Usman has a long way to go before being compared to GSP.

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Georges St-Pierre, Kamaru Usman, and Stephen Thompson – Three top-tier welterweights

Geoff Neal (left); Stephen Thompson (right)
Geoff Neal (left); Stephen Thompson (right)

Georges St-Pierre is widely revered as one of the welterweight division’s true legends and heralded amongst the best fighters of all time. That said, GSP has consistently stated that he isn’t likely to step out of retirement.

On the contrary, Kamaru Usman has vowed to continue his reign of dominance in the UFC welterweight division. Usman is rumored to be facing archrival Jorge Masvidal in his next fight.

Meanwhile, Stephen Thompson is coming off a brilliant unanimous decision win over Geoff Neal whom he fought in December 2020. Riding high on his win’s momentum, Stephen Thompson has lately been campaigning for a shot at the UFC welterweight title that’s currently held by Kamaru Usman.

Published 24 Feb 2021, 05:11 IST
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