With nearly every sports organization on the planet on pause at the moment as the world deals with the COVID-19 pandemic, we feel it’s an opportune time to reminisce about some special moments in sports history.
On this day in 2008, Georges St-Pierre defeated Matt Serra to win back his welterweight title at UFC 83 at the Bell Centre in Montreal in what was the first UFC event ever held in Canada.
“Wow time flies,” St-Pierre said in a recent interview with ESPN when realizing it has been 12 years since that event. “It’s crazy. It’s insane. That was one of the best moments of my career. It was a home fight, my parents, my friends, everybody was there. The first fight in Canada. It was a dream come true for me.”
The win was all the more meaningful because the Saint-Isidore, Que., native was avenging a loss. St-Pierre had been upset by Serra one year earlier. He was finished in the first round at UFC 69 in what remains one of the biggest upsets in mixed martial arts history.
St-Pierre rebounded with dominant wins over Josh Koscheck and Matt Hughes to earn his rematch with Serra. Hughes was the only other fighter to get the better of St-Pierre during his career.
“Unfortunately, nobody is invincible and I failed twice in my career but these two failures that I had made me better and stronger,” St-Pierre said.
— ESPN MMA (@espnmma) April 19, 2020
The UFC felt Montreal would be a fitting setting for St-Pierre’s redemption.
The historic event sold out immediately with every available ticket being scooped up literally within one minute of tickets going on sale to