Georges St-Pierre, the Ultimate Fighting Championship welterweight champion, has been competing in the premiere mixed martial arts organization since January 2004. In that fight, the undefeated Canadian grappler earned a unanimous decision victory against Judo expert, Karo Parisyan. Since that time, St-Pierre has gone on to have an impressive run and is one of the most popular fighters in the sport.
St-Pierre now holds a 24-2 career record, losing just to Matt Hughes in October 2004 and Matt Serra in April 2007. Since the Serra loss – which cost him the UFC welterweight title – he has gone 11-0, including victories against some of the most talented fighters in the sport including Josh Koscheck (twice), Hughes, Serra, Jon Fitch, B.J. Penn, Carlos Condit, and most recently, Nick Diaz.
With all his success inside the Octagon, St-Pierre has also found great success with his financial situation. Since UFC 46, which was the first time athletic commissions began reporting fighter salaries, only two fighters have made more money than St-Pierre has in the UFC. Chuck Liddell tops the list with $4.32 million earned, while Tito Ortiz is second with $4.075 million with St-Pierre not far behind at $3.972 million.
St-Pierre and other fighters still make more money through pay-per-bonuses and sponsorships, but what 10 fights have been the best for St-Pierre in padding his bank accounts with money directly from the UFC?
10. vs. Matt Hughes at UFC 79, $210,000
The salary that St-Pierre earned in this fight from December 2007 shows how big the sport has become in recent years. By stepping into the Octagon to fight Hughes for the interim UFC welterweight title, St-Pierre earned $80,000. After picking up the second-round submission victory (Armbar) against Hughes, he walked away with an $80,000 win bonus and another $50,000 for Submission of the Night. These numbers pale in comparison to what St-Pierre makes in each fight in 2013.
9. vs. Matt Serra at UFC 83, $224,000
After St-Pierre picked up the series win against Hughes at UFC 79 for the interim UFC welterweight title, he needed to get through Serra to win the undisputed title at UFC 83. It took St-Pierre less than 10 minutes to get the TKO victory against Serra at the event and he picked up $124,000 for showing and another $100,000 for the win.
8. vs. Jon Fitch at UFC 87, $284,000
In his first defense after reclaiming the UFC welterweight title, St-Pierre took on Fitch, who was riding a 16-fight winning streak of his own. Fitch is a wrestler who was known for lying on top of his opponents, but St-Pierre didn’t allow that. St-Pierre controlled Fitch for 25 minutes and walked away with the UFC welterweight title still around his waist. The salaries from this event were never made official, but it is believed that St-Pierre earned $124,000 for showing, plus $100,000 for winning. On top of that, he earned another $60,000 for Fight of the Night.
7. vs. B.J. Penn at UFC 94, $400,000
These two men had fought before at UFC 58 with St-Pierre earning the split-decision victory. This fight was contested in Las Vegas, but it wasn’t just the gamblers that walked away this weekend with a big payday. St-Pierre earned $200,000 for showing up for the title defense and another $200,000 after Penn’s corner stopped the fight following the fourth round. It was one of the most dominating wins in St-Pierre’s career and one of his biggest paychecks.
6. vs. Thiago Alves at UFC 100, $400,000
At the 100th pay-per-view in UFC history, this monumental card featured monster payouts for some of the biggest fighters in the sport including Brock Lesnar, Dan Henderson, Fitch, Michael Bisping, Mark Coleman, and St-Pierre. St-Pierre earned $200,000 salary for showing and another $200,000 after controlling his Brazilian opponent for five rounds.
5. . vs. Dan Hardy at UFC 111, $400,000
Hardy came into this fight riding a seven-fight winning streak, but soon after losing this fight to St-Pierre in brutal fashion, would go onto lose four straight. Some thought that Hardy could compete with the champion, but 25 minutes after the fight began, St-Pierre had earned another $400,000.
4. vs. Jake Shields at UFC 129, $400,000
The UFC brought Shields over from Strikeforce to compete in their welterweight division. He won his first fight in the promotion, setting up this title shot with St-Pierre. Shields never had a chance and St-Pierre walked away with his full purse money after the unanimous decision win.
3. vs. Nick Diaz at UFC 158, $400,000
In what was billed as one of the greatest grudge matches in the history of MMA, the action never lived up to the hype. Diaz left Strikeforce and moved onto the UFC and defeated Penn in his first fight. He would then lose to Carlos Condit and fail a drug test, leading to a one-year suspension. The eccentric Diaz petitioned for his fight with St-Pierre and the champion was more than willing to oblige. St-Pierre controlled the fight and didn’t allow Diaz to gain much offense. When the final bell sounded to end the fifth round, St-Pierre had his hand raised in victory and earned another $400,000 payout.
2. vs. Carlos Condit at UFC 154, $470,000
In his first fight in more than 18 months, St-Pierre successfully defended his title against Condit. Both fighters walked away with $70,000 bonuses for Fight of the Night, but it was St-Pierre who walked away with an additional $400,000. In what is the norm with his current contract, St-Pierre received $200,000 for simply appearing inside the Octagon in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, and then doubled his salary by completing the unanimous decision victory.
1. vs. Josh Koscheck at UFC 124, $500,000
Unofficially, this was the highest payday that St-Pierre has gotten in his professional career. It was the sixth straight successful title defense for St-Pierre and was one that he desperately wanted. In the buildup to the fight, Koscheck was smack-talking with the champion and St-Pierre bludgeoned his face. St-Pierre made $200,000 by showing up, $200,000 more for winning and another $100,000 bonus for Fight of the Night.
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