It’s Official – Georges St. Pierre Vacates UFC Welterweight Title, New Titlist To Be Crowned At UFC 171

Georges St. Pierre does everything with class, it seems, including walking away from MMA. While he claims he’ll come back when he’s ready, right now his contract is frozen and he is no longer champion.

He announced this earlier today at a press conference with Dana White. GSP will be vacating the title, one he’s held since defeated Matt Serra at UFC 83. Robbie Lawler vs. Johny Hendricks will crown a new champion at UFC 171 in March 2014. Jon Jones vs. Glover Teixiera, which had been scheduled for that event, is now pushed to UFC 172.

This isn’t the first time a UFC title has been vacated by either the champion or the company.

Randy Couture vacated the UFC heavyweight title in 1998 following a contract dispute. Bas Rutten would do the same when he beat Kevin Randelman for it in May 1999. Josh Barnett and Tim Sylvia were both stripped of the title following failed drug tests and Frank Mir lost his after his motorcycle accident.

Frank Shamrock vacated the then Middleweight (now light heavyweight) title following his victory over Tito Ortiz in November of 1999.

Murilo Bustamante was stripped of the current version of the middleweight title in October 2002 when he left the UFC for Pride.

BJ Penn was stripped of the welterweight title in May 2004 when he left the UFC for K-1.

Jens Pulver was stripped of the lightweight title (then known as the bantamweight title) in February 2001 after a contract dispute. Sean Sherk was also stripped of the title following a drug test failure in December 2007.

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