KNOCKOUT! To watch Conor McGregor vs. Jose Aldo full fight video highlights from last night click here!
He did it.
Conor McGregor unified the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) 145-pound titles last Saturday night (Dec. 12, 2015) by smoking Jose Aldo in the pay-per-view (PPV) main event of UFC 194 (full results here), held inside the jam-packed MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.
I didn't think he would pull it off, so excuse me for one second while I go finish my glass of shut-the-fuck-up.
[wipes tears with Brazilian flag]
Now then, we have ourselves an undisputed featherweight champion, but a not-so-new division No. 1 contender. Frankie Edgar stopped Chad Mendes at The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) 22 Finale last Friday (Dec. 11) to anoint himself the next in line for a crack at the crown.
This is not unfamiliar territory.
Edgar dropped to 145 pounds back in 2013 and was hastily thrust into a title fight against Aldo, based on his considerable accomplishments as a lightweight. Sounded good on paper, but the former 155-pound kingpin had yet to steady himself in his new home and was already fighting the baddest man the division had to offer.
Trial by fire.
Since that unanimous decision loss, Edgar took five straight (with three finishes). More importantly, he's now expected to face McGregor after "Notorious" managed to leapfrog "The Answer" back in November 2014. Let's not forget, a majority of mixed martial arts (MMA) fans originally wanted "Aldo vs. Edgar 2."
Instead, McGregor took a free ride in the form of Dennis Siver while Edgar was packed up and shipped out to the Philippines. That's where he would keep the engine running against bantamweight contender Urijah Faber. After smashing Cub Swanson in Texas, a fight against "The California Kid" hardly seemed fitting.
Not that it matters.
Edgar did what every fighter needs to do when they want a shot at the title, and that's keep winning until the promotion is forced to concede, or there is no one left to stand in the way. You can argue for Aldo's immediate rematch -- for the same reason Ronda Rousey gets an immediate do-over -- but the circumstances are much different.
I was of the belief back in January that McGregor needed to face Edgar before challenging for the featherweight title. Not only did I think a win would have legitimized the trash-talking Irishman (this was before Chad Mendes became part of the equation), I was also convinced it would give Edgar some credibility among fence-straddlers.
It's no secret that McGregor's hands are downright lethal (just ask Aldo).
So here we are just over a year later and we're back to where we started. McGregor and Edgar are once again in a position to fight. "The Answer" is confident he can smash "Notorious" -- even on his worst day -- while the new featherweight champion looks ... well, invincible.
Just one more reason why 2016 in going to be a great year.
For much more on the UFC 194 event, including play-by-play updates, recaps, reactions, video highlights and much more, head over to our comprehensive "Aldo vs. McGegor" results stream by CLICKING HERE.