Jose Aldo defended his Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Featherweight belt this summer when he finished Chan Sung Jung at UFC 163 in Rio De Janeiro, Brazil. It marked his fifth UFC title defense and cemented him as one of the top pound-for-pound fighters in the world.
MMA Fighting spoke with the featherweight champ to get his thoughts on the current featherweight landscape. Surprisingly, Aldo doesn't exactly seem all that excited about a possible rematch with Chad Mendes. He completely no-sells Mendes' winning streak, saying that he hasn't actually beaten anyone of note.
"Chad Mendes is still starting, haven't fought anyone ranked yet, only fought guys that are not that good. He's coming off good wins, but he hasn't beaten good guys. So I believe the next two should be Ricardo Lamas and Cub Swanson."
While it's true that Mendes' winning streak includes fighters such as Cody McKenzie and Yaotzin Meza, he also was able to finish both Clay Guida, the current no. 9 featherweight, and Darren Elkins, who is knocking on the top 10 door.
Instead, Aldo believes that Ricardo Lamas deserves the next shot at the featherweight title. Lamas seemed to have secured himself a shot before the UFC decided to go ahead and book Aldo against Anthony Pettis. Pettis subsequently pulled out of the bout due to injury.
"If I were Lamas, I wouldn't fight anyone and just wait for my opportunity. He was supposed to fight me already but then (Anthony) Pettis got himself in the middle. Lamas should wait, this is his moment. But it they decide to do a rematch between Lamas and Swanson to see who fights me, that's ok too."