Georges St. Pierre predicts Johny Hendricks will defeat Robbie Lawler and win vacant welterweight title at UFC 171

Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sp

"Whoever wins, I don’t care," St. Pierre insisted. "I just watch it as a fan."

... Annnnd NEWWWWWW UFC welterweight champion of the world ...

Those are the words top 170-pound contender Johny Hendricks can expect to hear at the conclusion of Saturday night's (March 15, 2014) UFC 171: "Hendricks vs. Lawler" pay-per-view (PPV) event, which takes place inside American Airlines Center in Dallas, Texas.

Assuming Georges St. Pierre is correct in his prediction.

The last man to wear the division strap -- who called it quits last December to get his head together -- acknowledges that Robbie Lawler can crack a cranium with just one punch, but believes the grappling game of "Bigg Rigg" will prove to be the difference maker on fight night.

From his conversation with The Canadian Press (via Sportsnet.ca):

"It's a fight where anything can happen. Both guys can put each other to sleep. They have a lot of power in striking, but I believe Hendricks has the edge in this fight because I believe he will come more well-prepared with his team and he's got an edge in the grappling department."

St. Pierre probably knows Hendricks better than anyone.

That's because he was locked inside a cage with the bearded brawler for 25 minutes as the headlining act at the UFC 167 PPV event last November. Despite getting knocked around for the better part of five rounds, "Rush" was able to sneak out of "Sin City" with a split-decision win.

And a one-way ticket to hiatustown.

Even if St. Pierre doesn't come back, there are still plenty of challengers at 170 pounds to keep the division exciting, including Tyron Woodley, Rory MacDonald and Hector Lombard, among others. But we can't start matchmaking until Sunday morning.

See you then.

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