Many consider GSP to be the best wrestler in mixed martial arts despite his lack of a collegiate wrestling background. His wrestling has been virtually unstoppable as of late in the UFC’s welterweight division, but would his success in the fight game translate to the amateur sport of wrestling? Well, he hopes to find out by testing himself against the world’s best at the 2012 Summer Olympic Games. GSP revealed his Olympic aspirations at today’s UFC 105 Fight Club Q&A.
“There is a big difference in me saying, ‘I want to go to the Olympic games,’ and actually going to the Olympic games. It is very hard … you have to pass through a bunch of obstacles before you get there…I’m a mixed martial artist. I like to compete not only in the sport of MMA, but I like the single sports [themselves]. I love wrestling, I love boxing … for me, I love every single [discipline] of the sport. That is why I consider myself a mixed martial artist…It’s tough. It wouldn’t be easy, but maybe we’ll see what is going to happen in London.”
Most infamously illuminated by Fedor Emelianenko’s round of negotiations with Zuffa back in late 2007, the UFC typically doesn’t allow it’s contracted fighters to participate in any competition outside the UFC, so it may seem like GSP’s Olympic dreams are over before they even get started. Not so. Dana White has already given his blessing.
“I think it would be great if he won a medal,” said White. “Guys that are under contract, they come to us and we sit down and we figure things out. Listen, the thing is if you’re under contract with me, (it) doesn’t mean I don’t want you doing anything else in your life.”
Great news for GSP. Now he just has to make the team which will be no small feat. I don’t know how well his MMA wrestling game will translate, but I certainly wouldn’t count GSP out of anything he sets his mind to.
GSP also revealed at the Q&A that he’s gained 10 pounds of muscle (scary) after hiring a nutritionist and hasn’t ruled out a potential move to the middleweight division. If he does, it sounds like it would be a permanent move since he doesn’t want to keep gaining and losing muscle mass. He’d like to fight Anderson Silva if he makes the move in the future, but he wants to see how his teammate Nate Marquardt fares first if he gets the rematch. He’s also very interested in a fight against Jake Shields, if Shields ever makes it to the UFC of course.