GSP vs. Diaz: Is St-Pierre Running from Johny Hendricks?

Jake MartinCorrespondent IIIDecember 18, 2012

Nov 17, 2012; Montreal, QC, Canada;  Johny Hendricks reacts after knocking out Martin Kampmann (not pictured) during first round action of their Welterweight bout at UFC 154 at the Bell Centre.  Mandatory Credit: Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports
Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports

Georges St-Pierre is not running from Johny Hendricks.

In fact, the only running GSP will be doing is running up MMA fans cable bills for March, as every hardcore fan must order UFC 158. Why?

Well, GSP will finally settle his long feud with Nick Diaz. In the past year-and-a-half, most of the drama in the UFC took place in the welterweight division. It all started when Diaz no-showed a few press conferences leading up to a title bout with GSP, and the hits just kept on coming.

You all know the story by now. Diaz eventually fought B.J. Penn, won by decision and called out GSP after the fight: "Where you at, George?!" The fight was then rescheduled, replaced because GSP had to repair his torn ACL and Carlos Condit beat Diaz. Seriously, this is a really long story.

To make it shorter, Diaz would eventually earn himself another title shot by not fighting as a result of a suspension (go figure?), and while all of this was taking place, Hendricks was ripping through studs.

Since UFC 141, which took place last December, Hendricks has knocked out Jon Fitch, won a decision against Josh Koscheck and knocked out Martin Kampmann. Oh, and both of those knockouts occurred in the opening minute of the fight.

Yeah, safe to say we have a new legitimate contender for the welterweight title. But St-Pierre doesn't want to fight him right now.

A serious argument could be made that GSP is ducking him because Hendricks does pose problems for GSP. Hendricks is an outstanding wrestler with true knockout power. Unlike most GSP fights, St-Pierre won't be able to just take it to the ground if he's in trouble. Hendricks is that good of a wrestler.

So honestly, is it a coincidence that GSP doesn't want to fight Hendricks yet, or is St-Pierre dodging this knockout artist?

It's undoubtedly a coincidence. St-Pierre has a personal vendetta with Diaz, as he feels he was disrespected and humiliated publicly by him. GSP wants to shut him up and prove to everyone that he's the better fighter.

And you know what? It's actually refreshing to see GSP show this kind of fire. A hungry, motivated GSP is a very scary thing, and after his outstanding performance against Condit, who knows how good he will look against Diaz in February?

As for him ducking Hendricks, it's just not so. Hendricks could give him a run for his money, but when you get down to it, GSP is a better striker than him.

Both fighters' wrestling abilities should cancel each other out, and though Hendricks has the knockout power advantage, St-Pierre is more crisp and fluent in his striking.

In fact, when these two eventually fight down the road, it should look a lot like St-Pierre vs. Koscheck II. With a precise jab and excellent foot movement, GSP will likely pick Hendricks apart on the feet and win a decision.

So before anyone starts to call the champ a coward, look deeper into the story. You just might find that the simple questioning of GSP running from Hendricks is downright comical.