The long-rumored news has been confirmed. Ariel Helwani reports via MMA Fighting that Georges St. Pierre has officially vacated the UFC middleweight championship.
After a four year absence, GSP returned to the octagon and defeated Michael Bisping to win the championship at UFC 217. St. Pierre also vacated his welterweight championship prior to his hiatus from MMA in 2013. He is the only fighter in UFC history to vacate titles in two weight divisions.
Interim middleweight champion, Robert Whittaker, is now the undisputed champion in the division and is slated to defend the title against Luke Rockhold at UFC 221.
In a statement provided by the UFC, GSP said, “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.” “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.”