Pettis vs. Aldo is a dream pairing in the world of MMA (Photos by Dave Mandel, Sherdog.com).
Written by Chris Cox (@CoxFight), Contributing MMA Writer
At the first of the month, we were delighted with what was another impressive showing by the man who could be the number two pound-for-pound fighter in the world at UFC 169. UFC Featherweight Champion Jose Aldo displayed dominance in a dismantling of challenger Ricardo Lamas, who stood a legitimate shot at Aldo with his wrestling ability. However, Aldo crushed him during the first four rounds and did not see much resistance until the 5th frame.
With this win, Aldo equaled Jon Jones with the most current UFC title defenses and has technically cleared out the featherweight division of possible opponents.
As of last year, there was an amazing rumor regarding a super fight that would involve UFC Lightweight Champion Anthony Pettis and Aldo. The two of them have been bantering back and forth through the media, saying they will face one another any time and any place. As the days progress, we are coming ever closer to the possibility to this fight. No contracts have been signed yet as we await the status of a Pettis leg injury, but there is still enough talk to help us decipher what the stakes could be in this super fight.
Option one is what I most hope will happen. Aldo would relinquish his featherweight belt and would head up to lightweight for an immediate title shot. Yes, this does force TJ Grant into a bit of a waiting game, but the fans would get the better treatment than the fighter in this instance. Aldo’s title would then be up for contention, which would most likely be decided by Chad Mendes vs. Cub Swanson. Now, if Aldo were to lose, he would be able to return to featherweight and get an immediate title shot to earn his gold back.
Pettis has said before that he would head to featherweight to take on Aldo. I would assume if they did the dance at 145, Pettis would relinquish his lightweight title in the same fashion Aldo would, and he would be able to return to his current weight class in the same fashion as well. In addition to dropping to featherweight, Pettis also said that he would be willing to fight at a catchweight. I would assume that it would be at 150 pounds, with no titles involved. It would strictly be done for the fans and personal vindication in regards to Pettis and Aldo.
A bout at 150 is just fine by me because it means that it still happens, and we are treated to a show between two of the best strikers in the world. Earlier, I stated that I would prefer the first option, which involved Aldo leaving to head to 155. This seems more logical for his career. He has cleared out one division, and he has done it very decisively. He has also suffered several bad weight cutdowns to 145 that have resulted in a somewhat poor performance in the latter rounds of some of his fights. Lightweight could be a very good home for him, and it could result in a slew of new challenges. Due to recent losses by Anderson Silva and the current retirement of Georges St-Pierre, Aldo and Jones are now considered the top two fighters in the world. Even Jones continuously talks of a move to heavyweight, but he has a bit more work to do in the light heavyweight division before he needs to do that. Aldo is ready for that move, though. And in my personal opinion, he needs it.
With everything said, I still won’t make my prediction for this fight until it actually gets signed on the dotted line. One thing is for sure, though. This could certainly be the biggest fight of the year. Additionally, it has all of the potential to win Fight of the Year and possibly Knockout of the Year as well.