(PRESS RELEASE) -- Las Vegas, Nevada – Fresh off unifying the
welterweight title in November following an 18-month absence due to
injury, UFC® welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre returns to
Montreal’s Bell Centre on March 16, 2013 to face former
STRIKEFORCE® champion Nick Diaz. St.
Pierre (23-2) has scored 10 consecutive victories in his dominant
reign atop the 170-pound division but no other opponent has
motivated him as much as the fiery and unpredictable Diaz.
The always-diplomatic St-Pierre, 31, has defeated the likes of
Condit, Matt Hughes
(twice), Jon Fitch, BJ
Penn (twice), Josh
Koscheck (twice) and Jake Shields,
but no other opponent has fueled him as much as the southpaw from
Stockton, Calif. The pair was originally slated to meet at UFC® 137
but a series of events, including a St-Pierre knee injury,
prevented the match up from ever taking place.
“There’s been a lot of talk about who I should fight next but this
was really the only choice for me,” said St-Pierre. “He’s made it
personal and I personally can’t wait.”
During his reign as STRIKEFORCE® welterweight champion, Nick Diaz
defeated archrival KJ Noons and finished both Evangelista
Santos and Paul Daley en
route to becoming the organization’s best 170-pound fighter. He’s
since returned to the UFC® with an impressive win over former
two-time champion BJ Penn before an interim title loss to Carlos
Condit and a year-long disciplinary suspension. Diaz now,
though, gets the fight he’s so eagerly awaited.
“This is the fight I want,” Diaz said. “I want to go out there and
beat Georges St.
Pierre in Montreal and show that I’m the best welterweight in
In addition to St. Pierre-Diaz, four more of the UFC®’s top-10
welterweights will clash at the Bell Centre while one fighter gets
a shot at redemption following a controversial disqualification
loss at the same venue just four months removed.
With his recent dominating win over legend BJ Penn, Rory
MacDonald (14-1) looks to avenge his only career loss against
former interim UFC welterweight champion Carlos
Condit (28-6). The pair met at UFC® 115 in a bout that saw
Condit come from behind and register a third-round TKO win with
mere seconds remaining.
Not to be overshadowed, title-hungry Johny
Hendricks (14-1), coming off his recent Montreal knockout win
over welterweight Martin
Kampmann, will be looking to cement his place as number one
contender as he meets the always-dangerous Jake
Tickets for UFC® 158: ST-PIERRE vs. DIAZ go on sale to the general
public Saturday, January 19 at 10 a.m. ET. More information
regarding the UFC® 158 on-sale, ticket prices and the fight card
will be announced next month. For more information or current fight
news, visit www.ufc.com. All bouts live and subject to change.
About the Ultimate Fighting Championship® Universally recognized
for its action-packed, can’t-miss events that have sold out some of
the biggest arenas and stadiums across the globe, the UFC® is the
world’s premier mixed martial arts (MMA) organization. Owned and
operated by Zuffa, LLC, headquartered in Las Vegas and with offices
in London, Toronto and Beijing, UFC produces more than 30 live
events annually and is the largest pay-per-view event provider in
the world. In 2012, the UFC burst into the mainstream with a
landmark seven-year broadcast agreement with FOX Sports Media
Group. The agreement includes four live events broadcast on the FOX
network annually, with additional fight cards and thousands of
hours of programming broadcast on FOX properties FX and FUEL TV.
This also includes the longest-running sports reality show on
television, The Ultimate Fighter®, which now airs on FX.
In addition to its reach on FOX, UFC programming is broadcast in
over 145 countries and territories, to nearly 800 million TV
households worldwide, in 30 different languages. UFC content is
also distributed commercially in the United States to bars and
restaurants through Joe Hand
Promotions, in English throughout Canada via Premium Sports
Broadcasting Inc. and Australia via Main Event and in French
throughout Quebec via Interbox. The UFC also connects with tens of
millions of fans through its website, UFC.com, as well as social
media sites Facebook and Twitter. UFC President Dana White is
considered one of the most accessible and followed executives in
sports, with over two million followers on Twitter. Ancillary UFC
businesses include best-selling DVDs, an internationally
distributed magazine, UFC.TV offering live event broadcasts and
video on demand around the world, the best-selling UFC Undisputed®
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Fan Expo® festivals, branded apparel and trading cards.