I translated the text. I'm hopeful that it'll be easier to read than a Google translation:
Georges St-Pierre will have to give his all to demolish Johny Hendricks Saturday evening in Las Vegas. Then, he must take the microphone and announce his retirement in the arena. At 32 years of age, it’s time for him to turn the page and to start a family before it’s too late. This is the advice of his mentor, Kristof Midoux.
Midoux’s comments will fuel the rumours of St-Pierre’s imminent retirement. The friend and mentor who took the Quebecker under his wing when he was but 16 years old has a great influence on him and only has one piece of advice for GSP: to leave it all in the cage on November 16th against Hendricks and to leave with his head held high, at the peak of his glory.
“Me, I told him: after this one, it’s over! Shine on that night. Finish that dude in front of everyone. Shut your detractors up. If you finish that guy, if you knock him out, then you’ll be free, you’ll be happy to take the microphone and to say that you’re done. To say that you are giving your place to others” stated Kristof Midoux in a lengthy interview with La Presse.
“I told him: finish well, Georges, and have the courage to take the microphone and to thank everyone. Those who won’t understand are those who have nothing to understand. They’re selfish. It’s time for him to think about himself. It’s the greatest gift he can give to himself. He could take advantage of what life has to offer and start a family.”
Midoux arrived in Montreal this week in preparation for UFC 167. As is the case before all of his protégé’s fights, he lives in his apartment and follows him everywhere. The two men have discussed retirement. What remains to be seen is whether things will play out the way the mentor hopes that they will. Is there a chance that St-Pierre will take his advice and give his farewell on Saturday in the middle of the Octagon? Midoux says “yes.”
“Personally, I’d love for it to happen like that. I’d really like for him not to make the same mistake that so many fighters have made. I wouldn’t want him to go on until he’s 35 years old. He has plans.”
Time for family
Midoux has played the role of mentor to St-Pierre for more than 15 years. He recalls having given him a simple piece of advice several years ago: not to start a family until after retirement.
“I told him to be selfish. It’s not true that you can have a family and children and remain at the highest level of the sport. He took my advice. If Georges really wants to start a family, he’ll have to do it after his career,” said Midoux. “At 32 years old, the time is right for him to do that.”
According to him, St-Pierre has had “the greatest career in the world.” The time has come for him to become “the best father in the world.” “People want to see him in the cage until he’s 40, but at 40, he’ll be a has-been with no wife and no kids,” states the mentor.
Georges St-Pierre’s actual intentions remain a complete mystery. When he’s asked the question, he assures us that he’s focused on Hendricks with no thought for what will come afterward. “There’s a big black hole after the fight on November 16th,” he said in the careful words of a man who doesn’t want to close any doors.
In the past, St-Pierre has never kept secret his wish to go out on top. He says he’s aware of the dangers of the sport. He says that those who hang on to it too long often suffer irreversible damage. “After my career, I want to live a long life and I want to have a family. I want to be able to play with my children,” stated St-Pierre. “I don’t want to be a broken man at 60 years old. That’s not the way I am.”
Making room for others
On top of starting a family, Midoux explains that St-Pierre would like to open a martial arts school. “He talked about it the other day. I told him to focus on Hendricks and that we’d talk about it after the fight,” he stated.
St-Pierre appears to have many plans in his mind: a family, a school. However, according to Midoux, he’d have another reason to announce his retirement on Saturday evening: in order to leave his place to his friend and training partner Rory MacDonald.
The 24 year old Montrealer originally hailing from British Columbia is getting closer and closer to St-Pierre’s title. He’s perceived as a legitimate contender in the welterweight (170 lbs.) division of the UFC. However, the two men have repeatedly stated that they had no intention of fighting each other.
“Rory has the ability to become a champion. Rory will never want to fight Georges because they’re friends,” explained Kristof Midoux. “So I told Georges: out of respect, don’t keep that guy from climbing the ranks. You’ve had your career.”
MacDonald will fight on the undercard of the St-Pierre vs Hendricks bout. He will therefore be present at MGM Grand in Las Vegas. Midoux hopes that St-Pierre and MacDonald will both win their fights and then that the Quebecker “will pass the torch.”
“Shake his hand on Saturday evening and yield your place to him. You don’t need this to live. Pass the torch to the next generation,” pleads Midoux. “Help Rory become a champion to show that Canadians dominate this weight class. It would be intelligent. It would be generous and Georges is generous.”
Does Midoux’s opinion have enough weight to convince St-Pierre to retire at the young age of 32, at the pinnacle of his career while he’s still the champion? We’ll see Saturday evening.
A few months ago, the fighter talked about Midoux to this author. “Kristof taught me everything. He made me the man I am,” he said.
Kristof Midoux now has one final lesson to teach Georges St-Pierre, perhaps the most difficult one of them all for an athlete: how to turn the page.