Although Rory MacDonald and UFC Welterweight Champion Georges St. Pierre appear to be on a collision course if the two continue to win their match-ups, the fighters’ trainer Firas Zahabi says the two have not split their training due to concerns they’ll have to fight.
Apparently word got out that MacDonald and St. Pierre have not been training together at the renowned Tristar Gym, but Zahabi explained the reason for this while appearing on MMA Junkie.com Radio recently:
“They’re both in the same practice room,” Zahabi said. “Georges is fighting a southpaw. But GSP doesn’t look like an Ellenberger in sparring. Georges is fighting a southpaw who throws big punches. Rory chips away at you and is a different style of punching than Hendricks. We’re using different bodies – we’re still working together. We’re in the practice room daily together, and practicing together. But after Rory’s fight, he’ll back to training with Georges as normal.”
Sounds like a reasonable explanation no? St. Pierre will of course fight the powerful John Hendricks at UFC 167 in November, while MacDonald will take on the fellow contender Ellenberger this Saturday at UFC on FOX 8. And as far as the argument that MacDonald may change his tune about fighting GSP, so that he can lock up the belt as well as the dollars that come with it?
“There’s a lot of greed in the world, but not everybody’s like that,” said Zahabi. “There are more important things than money. Rory makes a lot of money, as well. He’s very successful. When Georges is retiring, Rory will be nearing his peak, I think. I don’t think it’s worth making such a show out of it.”
Although there’s still a ways to go before GSP-MacDonald could even be considered, it’s certainly an intriguing discussion that has captured headlines heading into this weekend’s card.
UFC on FOX 8 will be hosted by Seattle’s Key Arena and will feature flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson taking on John Moraga in the main event.