Georges St-Pierre’s Brazilian jiu-jitsu coach, John Danaher, claims that the former UFC welterweight and middleweight champion may never fight again after being diagnosed with ulcerative colitis.
St-Pierre vacated his title last week insisting that he needed to “focus on his health”, with interim champion Robert Whittaker being named as undisputed champion in his place.
Speaking Monday on The MMA Hour, Danaher insisted that St-Pierre would need time to decide if he would return to the Octagon in what he described as a “life-changing decision.”
He stressed that the former champion’s reaction to his medications would play a big part in the decision.
“That is a definite possibility,” he replied when asked if St-Pierre’s competitive career could be over.
“I don’t want to say yes or no because it’s not my decision, really. These are deeply personal decisions that Georges has to make. More over, they have to be made not as spur of the moment decisions.
“These are life-changing decisions, so they will have to made on the basis of Georges’ reaction to the medications that he’s taking for ulcerative colitis.
“From what I understand, the standard medications for ulcerative colitis take some considerable amount time to take effect – anywhere from three to eight months – before you’ll even notice any changes. We have to see how he reacts to his medication regiment and make a decision based on that.”
Danaher stated that St-Pierre would have to have the right motivation to fight again at this point. He cited GSP’s somewhat disputed win over Johny Hendricks as a contest that he did not believe that he had the right motivation for.
“What I don’t like to see is people fighting because they think they have to,” he said. “This is a very, very hard sport. I don’t think many people are aware of the rigors of what goes on in a championship level fight camp.
“It’s not for the faint of heart, and if you’re not 100 percent committed to the project and it’s not something you positively enjoy doing at least in some way, you don’t have to love every aspect of it but there has to be some kind of deep feeling of enjoyment fulfillment – then I don’t believe you should get involved.
“I know one fight camp where Georges wasn’t mentally committed to it was the fight camp with Hendricks, where there were doubts about whether he wanted to be fighting anymore. That was probably the fight camp where he had the least motivation to get in there, as he normally would.”
The celebrated coach revealed that St-Pierre had every intention of continuing to fight ahead of the Bisping fight, but now that a medical issue has emerged his future is uncertain.
“Here (for the Bisping fight) there was tremendous motivation,” Danaher said.
“Georges was extremely enthusiastic about the fight and expressed a deep desire to comeback. But, there was a physical problem, which was making it difficult.
“Your first question was medically will he be able to comeback? The answer is we don’t know yet and we’ll see how he reacts to the medication. Your second question was psychologically is he in the game – does he want to do this?
“I know for a fact that prior to the Bisping fight the answer was yes. Since this medical problem has come up and become so prevalent and emerged so strongly in the middle of the last camp – it’s an open question at this point. It’ll be determined by how he reacts to the medication that he is on.”