December 12, 2015. A date both Conor McGregor and Jose Aldo are going to remember forever – albeit for contrasting reasons.
The stacked UFC 194 card finally saw Aldo attempt to silence the brash Irishman that had pushed his luck and brought many more new eyes to the MMA product.
In the end, Aldo’s reign of dominance stretching back to his WEC days was shattered in a mere 13 seconds. Or 12, if McGregor’s recent claims are to be believed.
McGregor, who was the interim champion heading into the event, visibly irked Aldo which started the infamous mind games for the Notorious – using the same tactics to defeat the majority of his opponents before the Octagon doors had even shut.
Now that McGregor has, yet again, announced his retirement from the sport, the MMA world is understandably reacting to his decision.
It’s understandable why there’s so much scepticism. McGregor did the same before UFC 202 against Nate Diaz, thanking fans for the cheese, calling it a day and returning months later for the second bout.
More fights, a stint in boxing and millions of dollars later, it’s evident that McGregor never has to fight again. If there was one fighter the world wanted to hear from – other than the likes of Khabib Nurmagomedov and Nate Diaz, it’s Aldo.
Unsurprisingly, the always-classy Aldo was full of praise when he reacted to the news of McGregor announcing his retirement from MMA.
Speaking to Portal do Vale Tudo, Aldo claimed that the world should remember what McGregor has done for the sport as a whole.
According to MMA Mania, he said: “What he did for the sport and what he won. If I fight Floyd Mayweather and make 80 million dollars, the UFC would never see me again too.
“Do you really think I would train multiple martial arts three times a day?
“He had a brilliant career, he was a great fighter and if he really is retiring, I congratulate him for all he did in the sport.”
Aldo has always campaigned for a rematch against McGregor, with the former champ-champ also recently admitting that the likes of Aldo, Max Holloway and Dustin Poirier have bounced back to be worthy of a rematch.
With Aldo looking likely to retire in 2019, however, it’s likely that the McGregor ship has sailed.
What do you make of Jose Aldo’s reaction to Conor McGregor’s MMA retirement? Have YOUR say in the comments section below.