Duane Ludwig may be out as head coach of Team Alpha Male, but that won't stop "Bang" from helping Chad Mendes reach his championship dreams when he faces Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) featherweight kingpin, Jose Aldo, at UFC 176 on Aug. 2, 2014 in Los Angeles, California.
According to Ludwig, he and "Money" recently spoke about working out a plan to train together after Ludwig leaves California to go back home to Colorado. This, after Chad originally revealed during a team meeting -- one Ludwig didn't attend -- that he didn't mind either way if Duane was in his corner or not.
But after seeing T.J. Dillashaw -- another "Bang" disciple -- outstrike and outclass Renan Barao this past weekend (May 24, 2014) at UFC 173 to claim the promotion's bantamweight strap (video), Mendes realized his chances of defeating Aldo in their rematch would only increase with the talented teacher by his side.
From Ludwig's conversation on The MMA Hour:
"Chad Mendes and I talked a little bit, so I am going to figure something out with him to see what we're going to do. I'm not going to say that he needs me, but his chances of winning the title are better with me, than without me. I know that, he knows that and we all know that. So, I'm going to try and figure something out. There was a meeting conducted without me about a month ago or so, and Chad was given the option to have me corner him or not and said he didn't mind either way. So now he realizes that his chances are better with me. So he reached out and I'm always going to be there for my guys. I'm going to try to make something work to help him train for this camp."
I guess Ludwig does have the system to defeat Team Nova Uniao, after all.
Duane went on to reveal that his differences with Alpha Male leader Urijah Faber was not the reason for his departure, citing that owning his own academy in his home state has always been a dream of his.
Ludwig also reiterated that he isn't completely leaving the team, and will still find time to do plenty of cross training in both Colorado and Sacramento, something Duane feels will improve he and Faber's relationship.
Can Ludwig and Co. make it two championship fights in a row against the talented Brazilian camp?
Time will tell.