St-Pierre gives up UFC middleweight belt
Citing health issues, Georges St-Pierre has given up his newly won UFC middleweight title. The 36-year-old from Montreal won the 185-pound crown Nov. 4 when he dethroned Michael Bisping at UFC 217 in New York. It was the first fight for St-Pierre since he stepped away from the sport four years earlier. St-Pierre (26-2-0) said his contract called for him to fight interim champion Robert (The Reaper) Whittaker next, but that’s now off. “My fight at UFC 217 was one of the greatest nights of my life, but I now need to take some time to focus on my health,” St-Pierre said in a statement. “Out of respect to the athletes and the sport, I don’t want to hold up the division. I will be giving up my belt and once I’m healthy I look forward to working with the UFC to determine what’s next in my career.” St-Pierre has been diagnosed with ulcerative colitis.