When UFC featherweight champ Jose Aldo first made a name for himself in WEC it was in large part the result of not only his dominance in the cage but the way in which he beat opponents. Six of his seven WEC appearances resulted in a strike-based stoppage with the lone exception being a decision over a badly-battered Urijah Faber. However, Aldo has gone to the judges’ scorecards both times he’s fought inside the Octagon – something the 25-year old Brazilian hopes to change tonight when he faces Chad Mendes at UFC 142.
Aldo spoke some about his inability to overwhelm opponents in the UFC as he did in WEC, offering up a fairly logical reason for the change in outcome.
“More publicity means more studying, more strategy, and guys come to fight avoiding my creativity,” explained in an interview with the UFC’s website. “It’s not like in the WEC times, when they were unsure of, ‘What will this guy will come out with next?’ So this is not just trying to knock their head off, but there is an elite opponent ready to capitalize on my mistakes and spoil things for me.”
“I never stopped training flying knees, and my standup game is much better than it was in the WEC, but like I mentioned, we have worthy talent standing on the other side of the cage,” he continued. “WEC (did) too, but in the UFC, the opponents have more footage and they are taking advantage of this fact.”
Come tonight’s bout against Mendes it could be a different story, as Aldo revealed he is understandably amped about competing in his home-country, saying, “I’m fighting in Rio de Janeiro, with the support of my fans, so I’ll push the pace and get back on the road to knockouts.”
Fans can catch Aldo’s attempt to finish the unbeaten Mendes tonight on PPV when things start at 10:00 PM EST. As always Five Ounces of Pain will be covering the action from start to finish. Make sure to check back here when preliminary pairings begin at 7:00 PM EST on Facebook.
PHOTO CREDIT – WEC/UFC