On Saturday night, Jose Aldo will aim to unify the featherweight division and stop Max Holloway in his tracks in front of a home crowd at UFC 212 in Brazil.
Holloway was awarded the title after defeating Anthony Pettis back in December, while there was plenty of outcry from fans as UFC decided to strip the full version of the title away from Conor McGregor, following his victory over Eddie Alvarez at UFC 205 where he claimed the lightweight title in the process.
ALDO VS. HOLLOWAY
Fans criticised UFC for awarded the title back to Aldo, but were perhaps correct in doing so as the Irishman had never even defended it.
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Although Aldo has continued to chase a rematch with the Notorious, UFC president Dana White recently came out and revealed that he told the Brazilian it simply isn’t happening and now, Aldo has other plans in his sight.
Speaking to MMA Junkie, he revealed that after fighting Blessed, he intends on trying his luck in the lightweight division.
More interestingly, though, he revealed that Khabib Nurmagomedov and Tony Ferguson didn’t take the offers to fight him.
According to BJ Penn, Aldo said: “I want to test myself in new divisions. I want to test myself against new challenges, new athletes, do super fights.
“The UFC is opening up that side now. Before, I’d tried to move up to lightweight and couldn’t. It didn’t work out. But not now.
“I just negotiated two fights. The opponents [lightweight contenders Tony Ferguson and Khabib Nurmagomedov] didn’t take them, but I know it’s a lot closer.
“I have to keep that going. I have to stay motivated. I have to win the fight, and this way I know I can make these challenges.”
Aldo went on to add that his plan doesn’t mean he has to challenge the champion, as he just wants the big-name fights which will see him remain more active inside of the Octagon.
He added: “ I want to do super fights. I don’t necessarily want to challenge the champion. I want to do fights that allow me to stay active.
"A champion needs big opponents, bigger promotion processes – and that gets in the way of a champion who wants to fight more times in a year.
“With super fights, I can do them and then fight in my division right after that. This is what I have in mind – fighting more often. I think the fans want to see Jose Aldo in action in the Octagon more often.
“I want to do super fights, get new challenges, maybe challenge a lightweight, or for the title, but go back to my division and defend that too.
"I don’t want to get a belt and stop fighting. This is what I love doing. This is what I chose for myself, this is why I wake up early every day and go to the gym to give it my all at training. That’s why.”
Following his shock 13-second loss to McGregor, perhaps Aldo has a point to prove that one loss doesn’t define him.
Would you like to see Jose Aldo compete in the lightweight division? Have YOUR say in the comments section below.
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