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Georges St-Pierre vacates UFC welterweight championship, walks away from MMA

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Today, long time UFC welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre announced that he would be vacating the UFC title and taking some time away from the world of MMA. The announcement came during a media call given by St-Pierre and UFC president Dana White.

There had been much speculation about the future of St-Pierre following his narrow victory over Johny Hendricks at UFC 167. With today's media call, St-Pierre ended the speculation.

“I’ve been fighting for a long time,” St-Pierre said. “I have 22 fights in the UFC, and 15 were for a world title. I've been fighting a long time at a high level, a lot of pressure and criticizing. I've decided I needed to take some time off.”

“The UFC is a business,” St-Pierre continued. “I’m vacating my title out of respect for the other competitors.”

With those words a five year reign as champion was ended.

Georges St-Pierre first won the UFC welterweight title in 2006 with a win over UFC Hall of Fame member Matt Hughes but was defeated in his first title defense by Matt Serra. St-Pierre then became the interim UFC welterweight champion in 2007 at UFC 79 and became undisputed champion at UFC 83 in 2008. During his run as champion, St-Pierre defended the title nine times.

There is no doubt that St-Pierre has left his mark on the sport of MMA and the UFC. St-Pierre was one of the UFC's biggest pay per view draws. He leaves his MMA career with a remarkable 25-2 record overall and a 20-2 record in the UFC.

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