November 19, 2013
Georges St-Pierre (left) took as much of a beating as he gave in his win over Johny Hendricks at UFC 167.
Isaac Brekken/AP

Interesting to hear that from a promoter who has said many times in the past that he would never stand in the way of a fighter who feels it's time to retire. White acknowledged as much a short time later at the press conference, although other than pointing out that St-Pierre putting his career on hiatus was not a true retirement, the UFC president did not soften his stance. He just added a dose of sarcasm.

Even if, in the end, White entices St-Pierre back into the cage with honey rather than vinegar, that's a dangerous road to go down. The fighter had a reason for saying he needs a break. And based on what he said, GSP shouldn't be leaned on to continue fighting, whether that persuasion comes via a bully's ridicule or a friendly arm around the shoulder that smoothes out problems that, in White's contention, "aren't as bad as he thinks they are." If there's convincing to be done, it should start with Georges St-Pierre. He should have to persuade the UFC and athletic commissions that he's in the right place, physically and mentally, to be allowed to compete again. We all heard what he said. Words do indeed matter.

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