UFC 154 Tale of the Tape: Georges St-Pierre (-315) vs. Carlos Condit (+225)

Event: UFC 154 Matchup: Georges St-Pierre (-315) vs. Carlos Condit (+225), for the undisputed UFC welterweight title Location: Bell Centre, Montreal, Quebec, Canada Time: 10 p.m. (ET) How to watch: Pay-Per-View Georges St-PierreTALE OF THE TAPE: THE FAVORITE Name: Georges “Rush” St-Pierre MMA Record: 22-2 UFC Record: 16-2 Age: 31 Nationality: French-Canadian Height: 5-10 Weight: 170 pounds Style: Wrestling/Striking Camp: TriStar Gym Strengths: Extremely well-rounded, championship-level experience, excellent striking, powerful takedowns, dominant ground control, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt, will enjoy the home-crowd advantage, very smart, physically/mentally strong, very fast Weaknesses: First fight after a 19-month layoff and after reconstructive knee surgery, ring rust, has been TKOed before Last 5 Fights: W – Jake Shields (UD), W – Josh Koscheck (UD), W – Dan Hardy (UD), W – Thiago Alves (UD), W – B.J. Penn (UD) Notable Career Wins: B.J. Penn x2 (UD, SD), Jon Fitch (UD), Matt Hughes x2 (TKO, SUB), Sean Sherk (TKO), Matt Serra (TKO) Notable Career Losses: Matt Serra (TKO), Matt Hughes (SUB) Notable Career Achievements: Current UFC welterweight champion (has made six straight title defenses) Keys to Victory: Get the takedown, don’t let Condit threaten off his back TALE OF THE TAPE: THE UNDERDOG Name: Carlos “The Natural Born Killer” Condit MMA Record: 28-5 UFC Record: 5-1 Age: 28 Nationality: American Height: 6-2 Weight: 170 pounds Style: Striker Camp: Team Jackson – Winkeljohn Strengths: Improving rapidly every fight, possesses a deadly and diverse striking attack, knockout power in all limbs, good ground game (BJJ brown belt), very active and good footwork, very determined and mentally strong Weaknesses: Gets hit a lot, has been submitted multiple times in the past by lesser competition Last 5 Fights: W – Nick Diaz (UD), W – Dong Hyun Kim (KO), W – Dan Hardy (KO), W – Rory MacDonald (TKO), W – Jake Ellenberger (SD) Notable Career Wins: Nick Diaz (UD), Rory MacDonald (TKO), Jake Ellenberger (SD) Notable Career Losses: Martin Kampmann (SD), Jake Shields (UD), Pat Healy (SUB), Carlo Prater (SUB) Notable Career Achievements: current UFC interim welterweight champion, former WEC welterweight champion (made three straight title defenses before entering UFC) Keys to Victory: Stop the takedown, be active on the feet, move, if on back go for submission attempts, attack early while St-Pierre is experiencing ring rust FIGHT BREAKDOWN, PREDICTION, PICK & BET Long-time UFC welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre returns from a 19-month injury layoff to unify his belt with interim title holder Carlos Condit in the main event of UFC 154. St-Pierre vs. Condit is one of the biggest fights of the year, and the stakes are high as St-Pierre is expected to face UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva in a superfight should he get by Condit. However, that’s a big “if” because Condit is one of the very best welterweights in the world and possesses several weapons that St-Pierre will have to nullify if he’s to pick up the W. With the extended time off due to a knee injury and subsequent reconstructive surgery, many question marks surround St-Pierre, the biggest being we just don’t know if his knee will hold up during the bout. Odds are it will, but it’s possible St-Pierre won’t have the same explosiveness he once did on his takedowns, which is his bread and butter. If he still has the same powerful takedowns he had before the injury, he’s going to be a handful for Condit, because no one St-Pierre has fought in the UFC has been able to stifle his wrestling, and it’s doubtful Condit has the takedown defense to do so either. St-Pierre is a very intelligent fighter and knows he has to take this fight to the floor because, even though he’s an excellent striker himself, Condit is on another level. Condit has a varied attack on the feet, utilizing kicks, punches, knees, and elbows to brutalize his opponents. He’s coming off the biggest win of his career against Nick Diaz. Before that, Condit had defeated Dong Hyun Kim, Dan Hardy, Rory MacDonald and Jake Ellenberger in succession.  However, his last fight against Diaz was nine months ago, so he may experience some sort of ring rust, although not to the degree St-Pierre might. Unless St-Pierre foolishly chooses to strike with Condit, this fight is likely to hit the mat, and if it does St-Pierre should control him there. Condit is a tough guy and has never been TKOed in his career, but he’s also never fought anyone like the French-Canadian. St-Pierre, who says he is extremely motivated to make a big return to the UFC, will likely take more risks than he has in his recent fights with Jake Shields, Josh Koscheck, and Dan Hardy, and look for the finish more than ever before. But, at the end of the day, St-Pierre needs a W and he’ll do everything he can to keep his belt wrapped around his waist. Adam’s Fight Prediction: Provided the French-Canadian’s surgically-repaired knee holds up, Carlos Condit is not going to be able to stop Georges St-Pierre’s takedowns. With the dominant wrestling of St-Pierre, Condit isn’t going to have too many opportunities to land one on the champ on the feet, and he’s not active enough off his back to threaten GSP from there once the fight hits the mat. St-Pierre will get Condit down and control him, grinding the American out for the majority of five rounds before scoring either a late stoppage victory or a unanimous decision. Condit’s best chance of winning this fight may very well be if St-Pierre re-injures his knee during the bout, which is a remote yet not improbable possibility. Adam’s Pick: Georges St-Pierre via unanimous decision or late-round stoppage. Adam’s Recommended Play: Georges St-Pierre (-315) in parlays (click for latest MMA odds).

Written by Adam Martin.

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