One of the most dominant champions in UFC history may be finished with the promotion.
Georges St-Pierre, a former two-time UFC welterweight champion, said he no longer is under contract with the company in an interview on “The MMA Hour.”
“Right now, I’m a free agent,” St-Pierre said. “You heard it right, I’m a free agent. My lawyer terminated the contract with the UFC.”
St-Pierre said he contacted then-CEO Lorenzo Fertitta last February about finding an opponent. He also entered the USADA testing pool shortly after and discussed fighting at both UFC 200 and UFC 205, but was hoping to have a deal worked out for UFC 206 in Toronto.
“Georges St-Pierre remains under an existing agreement with Zuffa, LLC as his MMA promoter,” the UFC said in a statement Monday night. “Zuffa intends to honor its agreement with St-Pierre and reserves its rights under the law to have St-Pierre do the same.”
St-Pierre said he believes both sides were close to a deal earlier this year, but the Fertitta brothers’ sale of the UFC to WME-IMG this summer changed the course of negotiations.
“We were told that everything was put on ice until the new owners take charge, so we waited for weeks without any news from the new owners,” St-Pierre said. “Finally, the new owners come and told that Lorenzo’s offer was off the table.
“It was like a shock because we felt like we were making progress, we were almost there. And when they told us, I got angry.”
St-Pierre said his lawyer gave the UFC a deadline to offer a fight but didn’t hear back until the night of the deadline. The next day, his lawyer instructed him he was a free agent.
A superstar in his native Canada, St-Pierre amassed a 25-2 record (20-2 UFC) over 11 years as a professional. He last fought in 2013, winning a controversial split decision to successfully defend his welterweight title for the ninth time. He announced that night he would be stepping away from the sport “for a little bit” and has yet to compete since.