Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) President Dana White was adamant that his former Welterweight champion -- and international mixed martial arts (MMA) superstar -- Georges St-Pierre, would return to the Octagon sooner rather than later.
"Rush," however, responded that he would not comeback until UFC fixes its drug testing "problem."
Now, it seems, combat sports fans can stop reading between the tea leaves, with "terrible" news that the French-Canadian tore the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in his left knee while training. That's the opposite leg that required surgery to repair the same injury back in 2011, which sidelined St-Pierre for more than one year.
White shared his thoughts about St-Pierre's latest setback with Los Angeles Times earlier this afternoon:
"I didn't think his hiatus was going to be that long. That's one of the risks you run when you get away from the sport like that. You have a small window as a professional athlete to make what you can. The guy gave up his belt, walked away from the sport, and now he's out for who knows how long ... last time he had this injury, it was 14 months."
St. Pierre blew out the ACL in his right knee back in fall 2011 in preparation for a fight against Nick Diaz at UFC 143. The operation was deemed a "huge success," with St-Pierre returning to topple Carlos Condit via decision at UFC 154 in Nov. 2012 to unify his world title.
Shortly thereafter, St-Pierre settled his score with Diaz at UFC 158 in March 2013, winning a unanimous decision, and then barely retained his title against Johny Hendricks eight months later at UFC 167, at which time he announced that he was "stepping away" from the sport for an undetermined amount of time.
Now, it seems, St-Pierre and UFC are looking at a 14-month minimum sit, which would make him about 34 years old ... and certainly way beyond his MMA prime.
In the meantime, "Bigg Rigg" will have to just keep on truckin' ... for better or worse.