Former UFC featherweight champion Jose Aldo was upset to learn that his rematch with Cub Swanson, which was reportedly slated to happen at UFC 233, ended up falling through after Swanson denied accepting the bout. However, the Brazilian did not go too long without another opponent wanting to line up and face him.
Former lightweight contender and current featherweight Michael Johnson took to his Twitter account to challenge Aldo on the same card, in a move that was welcomed by Jose and his team, who wants to fight three times in 2019 in order to finish his UFC contract.
“We accept Michael Johnson,” Aldo’s coach Andre Pederneiras told Combate. “That’s an interesting fight for us. It would be a great fight for the fans. They’re both strikers, just like it was against Jeremy Stephens. It’s not that we want to pick opponents for these last three fights, but Aldo intends to finish his career with big fights. It’s no use facing a wrestler who’ll try to grapple and make a boring fight. We must pick the right fights, great ones, no matter the results, but they must be great. I wanted Aldo to have those fights at featherweight so he could finish his contract with a title shot. That’s the truth. We’re waiting on the UFC.”
Although Johnson offered to fight Aldo at UFC 233, on January 26, Jose tells Combate he would be even willing to fight one week later, at UFC Fortaleza in Brazil. He wouldn’t accept a date any further than that, because it would compromise his plans to fight three times in 2019 and finish his current contract.
“I don’t like to talk about fights before the contract is signed because these things can happen,” Aldo said. “But we were already in agreement. I was training for Cub for one week. I don’t want to fight three weeks after (UFC 233) because it would jeopardize my goal to fight three times until December 2019. If I don’t fight on January 26, it could be in Fortaleza.”
Jose Aldo (27-4) comes off a first-round TKO win against Jeremy Stephens back in July. The victory snapped a two-fight losing skid to current champ, Max Holloway, who defeated Aldo via TKO in June and December 2017.