Interim UFC featherweight champion Jose Aldo is all set to meet hated rival Conor McGregor in a unification bout in the near future, after besting Frankie Edgar in a brilliant five round performance at UFC 200 for the interim strap earlier this month, and is hoping for a spot at UFC 205 in New York for the 145-pound showdown.
Aldo and McGregor initially met at the peak of the brash Irishman’s decorated UFC run, in the main event of UFC 194 last December, for a unification bout between the two world-class combatants.
McGregor shocked the mixed martial arts (MMA) world when he ended the Brazilian’s decade of dominance in 13-seconds with a beautifully timed counter left hand to Aldo’s chin.
Now with another win under his belt since his devastating loss to ‘Notorious’, Aldo is ready for a second crack at the man he holds so much spite for, and is hoping to see McGregor succumb to Nate Diaz once again at UFC 202.
In a recent media scrum in Brazil, courtesy of MMA Fighting, Aldo stated that he wants McGregor to lose to Diaz next month in order to set up a rematch with the Irishman in New York this November.
‘Scarface’ does, however, fear that if McGregor is able to pull off a victory against the Stockton Native in their welterweight contest, it may set up an immediate trilogy bout, thus putting Aldo’s shot at ‘Notorious’ on hold:
“If he loses (to Diaz), it’s highly likely that they put us to fight on November 12, at Madison Square Garden.
The Irish community is big over there,” Aldo said. “But if he wins, I think they will do a third fight between them and ruin all my plans.”
Aldo claimed that if he had to put money down on McGregor or Diaz, he would take Diaz who is looking large as of late and will now have a full training camp heading into the second contest between the two men:
“If I had to bet, it would be Nate again,” he said. “From what I saw he’s way bigger, stronger, and he’s training. He got that fight on short notice and still was able to win.
Well trained, it’s really hard for McGregor. If you look at (Diaz’s) fights, even when he’s getting beat, he finds a way to come back. If I had to bet, it would be Nate.”
Despite UFC President Dana White claiming that McGregor will return to defend his featherweight title regardless of the UFC 202 outcome, Aldo doesn’t want to take any chances with his shot at once again reclaiming 145-pound glory, and fears a trilogy bout between McGregor and Diaz as a possibility if the Irishman is able to pull off the victory:
“No, no. He has to lose. Otherwise, they will do a third fight,” Aldo said. “I’m rooting for him to lose, of course. If he wins, they will do another rematch with Nate, and that’s bad. He has to lose. He has to lose. He will lose.”
When pondered with the possibility of McGregor never returning to the featherweight division, Aldo had this to say:
“Then I’m f—ed,” he said. “But I really hope it happens. If it’s a fight against Holloway, I don’t see any problem. This event in New York will make history. I really hope I’m at this card because I want to be part of history.”
McGregor and Diaz will meet in the main event of UFC 202 live on pay-per-view (PPV), from the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada on August 20, 2016.