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GSP believes 'amazing' Duffy could beat McGregor again and become a UFC champ

Georges St-Pierre has great expectations for the Donegal lightweight, his team-mate at Tristar in Montreal.

Canada UFC 217 Mixed Martial Arts Georges St-Pierre at yesterday's UFC 217 open workout in Montreal. Source: Ryan Remiorz

JOSEPH DUFFY WON’T be the biggest name from Tristar on the bill for UFC 217, but he’s certainly got a big future ahead of him according to the renowned Montreal gym’s most famous export.

After a four-year absence, former UFC welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre will return to the octagon to headline Saturday week’s card at Madison Square Garden.

St-Pierre, who’s regarded as one of the greatest mixed martial artists of all time, will aim to dethrone middleweight champion Michael Bisping in the headline bout for the UFC’s second event at the famous New York venue.

GSP, 36, will be one of three Tristar fighters competing at UFC 217. Aiemann Zahabi kicks the the action off with a bantamweight bout against Ricardo Ramos, while Donegal-born lightweight Joseph Duffy faces James Vick in the final fight before the main card.

Duffy, who’ll be bidding for his fifth victory under the UFC umbrella, will fight for the first time since his dominant win over Reza Madadi back in March. The only setback so far for the 29-year-old, who relocated to Canada in 2015, was a decision loss to Dustin Poirier in January 2016.

_ANY5614 Joseph Duffy speaking to the media yesterday. Source: Andy Cowan

St-Pierre has been impressed by Duffy since he joined the Tristar camp. Speaking last night at a media workout at the gym, the former champion said he believes his Irish team-mate is capable of working his way into title contention in the 155-pound division.

He also backed Duffy to overcome reigning UFC lightweight champion Conor McGregor if the pair end up in opposition again. While McGregor has come a long way since then, Duffy was victorious via first-round submission when they fought in November 2010.

“Joe beat Conor McGregor,” said St-Pierre, who himself has often been linked to a potential clash with the UFC’s biggest star. “He [Duffy] is coming in force now and he’s amazing.

“I think he wants to go and become a champion and maybe get another fight with him [McGregor]. We’ll see what’s going to happen. He’s looking very sharp nowadays. Better than ever. If they cross paths, I think he might beat him again.”

Source: The42.ie/YouTube

Duffy (17-2, 4-1 UFC) faces a tough task against Vick (11-1, 7-1 UFC) in nine days’ time. The 30-year-old American is aiming for his third victory of 2017, having stopped both Abel Trujillo and Marco Polo Reyes earlier this year. His only career defeat came at the hands of 12th-ranked lightweight Beneil Dariush at UFC 199 in June 2016.

– Additional reporting by Andy Cowan for The42 in Montreal

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