Earlier this month, recently promoted UFC featherweight champion Jose Aldo revealed that not only was he going to be moving up to lightweight, he would be competing for the interim featherweight championship. While this is likely due to Aldo’s desire to avenge his 13 second KO loss to Conor McGregor, it was also revealed this week that Max Holloway would be sidelined until April or May with an ankle injury, forcing him out of his scheduled UFC 208 title fight with Aldo.
Aldo spoke earlier this week on his move to 155, saying:
“I now expect and believe I will be fighting in early March. Either March 3 or March 4, I can’t remember.”
“I believe they will soon announce an interim lightweight title fight with me. They’ve been trying to find me an opponent, and — surprise, surprise — at least one has already turned down the fight against me. I’m waiting to see who they will find.”
Aldo then insinuated that Khabib Nurmagomedov was the man who turned down the fight, which prompted the Dagestani fighter to fire back on social media, saying that he was looking for a fight with Tony Ferguson, not Aldo.
“Aldo says, referring to me, that I refused to fight with him.
Tell him that I do not bully the little.
I want a real battle, and only Tony can give it to me. At this stage of my career, even if I win Daniel Cormier, fans will say that I have to fight with Tony, and I agree with them.
I have spent my career in the UFC asking for the strongest opponents, currently in this division we must decide who is stronger, me or Tony? Without exception, all the fans and experts want to see this fight and I want to give it to them.
And you, Aldo, I advise you not to lose the respect of your fans, including me, do not lose your head, do not fall for the mind games of the UFC, and be yourself.”
Since then there has been radio silence on the matter, however in a recent interview, Aldo gave fans an update on the situation, OlimpoMMA has the translation:
“This is what we asked for (interim fight at 155) and they accepted. Dana and Sean Shelby like the idea, and we are just waiting to close this fight in the lightweight division for the interim title.”