Photographer and designer Reed Krakoff had shot a bunch of MMA fighters, so I reached out about running an exclusive outtake of GSP, then interviewed him and wrote text.
PHOTOGRAPHY REED KRAKOFF
TEXT ELLIOTT DAVID
ONE OF THE MOST DANGEROUS MEN IN THE WORLD WOULDN'T FIGHT YOU IF YOU BEGGED HIM. AND THANK GOD FOR THAT
Georges "Rush" St-Pierre has the potential to be one of the deadliest and most terrifying men on the planet. So it 's a great testament to the 29-year-old Canadian's Zenlike calmness and kind Quebecois vibe that he instead just seems like an extremely fit human rather than the biological weapon he truly is. Perhaps it's because his uncanny ability to fight-he's the UFC Welterweight champion and is considered by most to be the best pound-for-pound fighter around—comes from a place of athleticism and tradition, not of violence.
"The first fight of my life, I remember, I got beat up by a guy at school," says St-Pierre, or GSP for short. "The guy was older than me—l don't remember the reason, but I remember I got beat up. [But] it 's not because I got beat up that I wanted to be a fighter. I'm not a guy who fights in the street; I do it as a sport. You're never going to see me fight in real life. And my dad is a black belt in Karate as well, so he taught me from the beginning."
And indeed that was only the beginning. GSP has since earned several black belts in various fighting styles and amassed an incredible Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) fighting record of twenty-two wins and only two losses. He's won a series of awards, including one from the Spike network last year: "Most Dangerous Man of the Year." In short, don't fuck with him.
"Fighting is natural," he says, referring to the massive following MMA has gained in recent years, becoming a major international sport, and being discussed as a possible addition to the Olympics. "You don't have to learn how to fight. You can be a more efficient fighter—we train to be more efficient every day. But I can take my mom, who's not a fighter at all, and put her in a situation—like, if I was a kid and someone tried to take me out, I'm sure she would fight for me. So fighting is something that everyone can relate to. It's a sport that you don't have to learn. You need to learn football. But fighting is different. People identify themselves more with it."