What the heck was that?
I had huge expectations for the main event for UFC 163 at the HSBC Arena in Rio De Janiero last night (August 3, 2013). Jose Aldo was set to defend his UFC Featherweight title against Chan Sung Jung. In his four title defenses within the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), Aldo has always brought the fight to his opponent.
The man who entered the cage last night wasn't the same champion who steamrolled his way through the featherweight division in both World Extreme Cagefighting (WEC) and the UFC. No, instead, the champion was tentative and worked a Volkmann-esque gameplan of stalling for takedowns against the fence.
His most memorable moments in the fight came when he'd catch Jung in mid-air and take the "Korean Zombie" to the mat. Unfortunately, he never capitalized on those takedowns with any semblance of aggression.
Midway through the third round, it appeared that Aldo was running out of gas and that Jung was finally starting to push the champion into those proverbial "deep waters."
The fourth round saw Jung gaining an edge and maybe, just maybe, the opening needed to win the UFC featherweight title. But then, in what is probably the weirdest finishing sequence in recent memory, Jung's right shoulder separated and Aldo finished the fight by TKO.
There is no doubt that those kicks to the arm were brutal. As someone that has dislocated his shoulder, I was wincing from the safety of my own couch. But that wasn't the ending I expected. It wasn't the performance any of us expected from the featherweight champ. I mean, when has Aldo ever pretended to be an American wrestler?
Aldo stated at the post-fight press conference that he believes he broke his foot in the first round, which would sort of excuse his lack of aggression. But even so, did he ever work to finish Jung on the ground? Because I didn't see a killer instinct. I saw a champion who is almost at the point of being too big for his division.
Aldo is absolutely enormous for featherweight and has had difficulty making the 145 pound limit in the past. It may be time for him to strongly consider a move up to lightweight. His fans deserve better outings in future fights.
For additional results and fallout from UFC 163 including recaps, reactions, videos, analysis and more, check out our "Aldo vs Jung" news feed by clicking here.