Current UFC Featherweight Champion Jose Aldo recently made some rumblings about potentially fighting for an interim lightweight title at UFC 209 this March. This coming after he was promoted from interim featherweight champion to full featherweight champion....only to have Max Holloway claim the interim featherweight title at UFC 206.
Aldo’s longtime coach, Andre Pederneiras, states that the UFC not only knows about Aldo’s plans, but they were on board with it as well.
“I think it’s time for the UFC to say something and back up everything we’re saying,” Pederneiras told Combate. “It sounds like we’re just saying stuff, but throughout all of this I’ve received messages, e-mails with proposals, everything. On our end, Aldo is in no way a liar. I think it’s time for people to know the truth, and that’s the truth. You can ask (UFC matchmaker) Sean Shelby if there’s a single lie in everything I’m saying.”
Aldo, as was mentioned earlier, is the current UFC Featherweight Champion, he plans on defending that belt as well.
“Our intention was always to defend the belt,” Pederneiras said. “Because a champion who doesn’t defend at least once doesn’t really stamp his championship belt. (Aldo) himself said it: I won my belt, I’ll defend it now – this in a conversation between us – and we’ll go after Conor. When Sean Shelby told me the fight wasn’t happening on Feb. 11, I said, ‘Sean, we’re now in a complicated situation. Our plans for this year would be this fight, challenging the No. 1 (lightweight) challenger, which would be Khabib – we want to get the toughest guy in the division, who everyone, say, runs from – and then, after that, Conor, who’s pregnant and will only fight after that.”
One thing that could happen if Aldo bounces between lightweight and featherweight is that both division could be in limbo for some time, something that Pederneiras says won’t be happening.
“It wouldn’t stop the (featherweight) division, since we have an interim champion,” Pederneiras said. “Since (Holloway) wouldn’t take the fight because he’s going to Disney, he can make a fight and defend his interim belt, and Aldo does the fight he wants to do, and, in case he wins, he gets Conor. If he gets beat, he’ll fight Holloway, no problem. Everyone is happy. Max Holloway goes to Disney to see Mickey and Goofy, Aldo fights the No.1 challenger, takes away Conor’s possible defeat to Khabib – which is what everyone thinks – and finally he has the rematch with Conor and shows the entire world he’s the true champion.”
Aldo himself hasn’t competed since UFC 200, where he defeated Frankie Edgar by unanimous decision to win the UFC Interim Featherweight Title.