That’s nothing he hasn’t heard before, and it’s not something that surprises the longtime UFC welterweight champion. He knows what he’s up against and relishes the challenge.
“He’s very well rounded, got knockout power, great, accomplished wrestler,” St-Pierre told MMAWeekly.com recently when assessing Hendricks. “He’s very skilled. He’s very athletic too.
“I’m very confident with my skill and I know he’s very confident with his. We’re going to solve our differences in the Octagon.”
Along with his power – Hendricks has knocked out the likes of Jon Fitch and Martin Kampmann during his current six-fight winning streak – Hendricks brings the added element of being a left-handed fighter.
It’s a unique element, but as St-Pierre is keen to point out, there are always challenges to overcome no matter whom the opponent is.
“(Hendricks being a southpaw is) a problem, like any other problem he brings,” said St-Pierre, adding his training will prepare him for that element of Hendricks’ game. “I’m gonna spar with a lot of professional boxers that are southpaw.”
St-Pierre’s approach to the fight and his training is as methodical as it always is, regardless of the opposition.
Every time he nears a fight, his opponent brings an element that St-Pierre hasn’t faced before, but each time he manages to overcome his opposition.
Many people point to Chris Weidman’s recent upset of Anderson Silva, however, and say, “Hendricks could be the one. Hendricks could be St-Pierre’s Chris Weidman.”
St-Pierre is aware, especially after Anderson Silva’s upset, that no matter how great, any fighter can lose on any given day, but he has been on the wrong end of the upset before, losing his belt to Matt Serra. That was more than six years ago, however, and he hasn’t lost since.
“I had a lot of big fight in my career. Every fight I had something special that came up during the leading up to the fight. ‘He’s the most disrespectful guy. He’s the perfect match-up to beat you.’ It’s always something special,” said the champ.
“And for (the Hendricks) fight, maybe that’s the special thing that is coming up is that style match-up. Maybe people think he’s the perfect style match-up to beat me.
“I don’t think so. I think I’m going to win the fight and I’m going to beat him. There’s only one way to find out.”