MONTREAL — Georges St. Pierre reclaimed his welterweight title Saturday night, dominating Matt Serra in a second-round technical knockout before a hometown crowd at Ultimate Fighting Championship 83.
The 26-year-old St. Pierre was greeted by a deafening roar from the crowd of more than 21,000 at sold-out Bell Centre.
The boos started before the stocky Serra, from Long Island, N.Y., started his entrance. St. Pierre (16-2) took down Serra right off the bat in the mixed martial arts bout.
The crowd sang “Ole, Ole Ole” as St. Pierre went about his business looking to improve his position on the ground. It took Serra four minutes to get back up, then St. Pierre took him down again.
It was more of the same in the second, with two takedowns and a standup exchange that St. Pierre won. The end came when referee Yves Lavigne moved in to stop a turtled Serra (16-5) from absorbing any more knees to the body at 4:45 of the second round.
Serra upset St. Pierre for the 170-pound crown one year ago at UFC 69 in Houston.
In the co-main event, former middleweight champion Rich Franklin claimed a TKO over Travis Lutter at 3:01 of the second round.
Franklin (25-3) survived a stint on the ground with Lutter, a black belt in jiu-jitsu, in the first round of a fight that did not live up to its billing.
Lutter (12-5) tried for an armbar but missed, and he soon paid for that failure. In the second, Franklin’s Muay Thai strikes and knees eventually took a toll on a gassed Lutter as he tried for a takedown.
On the undercard, middleweight Jason MacDonald (21-9) pounded out a win in an all-Canadian grudge match with rival Joe Doerksen, with referee Steve Mazzagatti stopping the bout 56 seconds into the second round.
The Canadian show ranks as the biggest — and fastest sellout — in UFC history. The previous attendance record was 19,049, set at UFC 68 on March 3, 2007, at the Nationwide Arena in Columbus, Ohio.