Georges St-Pierre made history in the UFC. Now he is part of the Canadian Museum of History.
The museum in Gatineau, Que., has acquired the championship belt the mixed martial arts fighter from Montreal won at UFC 94 in 2009. It also has a pair of gloves and shorts that he wore.
"We are very pleased to be the first institution to add to our collection a piece of memorabilia related to Georges St-Pierre, and in so doing recognize both his exceptional career and the popularity of mixed martial arts in Canada," Mark O'Neill, president and CEO of the Canadian Museum of History said in a statement.
"The belt helps us tell the story of a well-loved and inspiring figure in Canadian sport, and the evolution of mixed martial arts from brutal combat to a mainstream sport with universal rules."
St-Pierre first won the UFC welterweight title at UFC 65 in November 2006 when he dethroned Matt Hughes in Sacramento. But the Canadian lost his first title defence, surrendering the championship belt to Matt (The Terror) Serra at UFC 69 in Houston in April 2007.
A year later, St-Pierre won his title back from Serra at UFC 83 in Montreal. He went on to make nine successful title defences — including UFC 94 in January 2009 when he defeated B.J. Penn in Las Vegas in a champion-versus-champion matchup.
Penn, a former welterweight champion who held the lightweight title (155 pounds), stepped up a weight class to challenge St-Pierre.
The bout was stopped after four rounds. A battered, bloodied Penn headed to hospital while St. Pierre celebrated a second win over the Hawaiian fighter known as The Prodigy.
"Georges St. Pierre completely dominated the fight," UFC president Dana White said after the fight. "He said he was going to do it and he came in and did it."
St-Pierre (26-2-0) stepped away from the sport in late 2013, giving up his 170-pound title, but returned to defeat Michael (The Count) Bisping and claim the middleweight (185-pound) crown at UFC 217 in November.
He subsequently gave up the title, citing health issues. He has not fought since.
"I was very pleased and proud to learn of the acquisition of my UFC 94 championship belt by the Canadian Museum of History," said the 37-year-old St-Pierre. "The belt, which could have been lost as a result of an unfortunate set of circumstances, is now in good hands for the long term. It is a great honour to have it on public display."
St-Pierre is the second Canadian to win a UFC title, following Carlos (Ronan) Newton who was crowned welterweight champion in 2001. Known as GSP, St-Pierre holds wins over UFC champions Serra, Hughes (twice), Penn (twice), Sean Sherk, Johny Hendricks and Carlos Condit.
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