If Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) President Dana White is ecstatic at the interest surrounding what could be the biggest short notice fight in the promotion's history, he's not allowing that to prevent him from getting to the bottom of the mystery of Featherweight Champion Jose Aldo's injured ribs.
White claims the "proof" that the Brazilian provided was not proof at all, suggesting that the x-ray photos that he distributed (see them here) showed and old injury.
He explained during a Q&A session earlier today (via MMAFighting.com):
"So what happened was, when the pictures went out onto the Internet, right, and you saw this rib down here, that was an old injury. That was an old injury that was calcified white. The real injury was the bruised rib and cartilage. He had a bruised rib and cartilage. And the big problem for Aldo in taking the fight, wasn't the fight. It was making weight. He had to cut something like 24 pounds, and if he couldn't physically do it the way that he does it, he was afraid that he couldn't make weight. That was really the issue. But, he did not have a broken rib. It was a bruise. Every x-ray he sent out was of an old injury. What you saw right there on his body was an old injury, not a new injury.... It wasn't UFC doctors (who cleared him), either. It was three different doctors."
For his part, Aldo says suffered the injury while sparring less than three week's out from UFC 189 after a sparring partner threw a spinning back kick. There were conflicting reports that the rib may be broken or fractured, but last week the champ issued a defiant statement that discussed his difficult decision to pull out of the pay-per-view (PPV) main event.
He also included this:
Aldo's exams pic.twitter.com/Y6mee0gtPZ— Ana Hissa (@AnaHissa) July 2, 2015
MMAFighting.com asked Brazilian orthopedist Dr. Rickson Moraes, the first doctor to diagnose Aldo's broken rib, to comment on White's remarks. Moraes said an MRI shows Aldo has an occult rib fracture and examined the champ again when UFC expressed doubts, re-confirming his original diagnosis.
I guess this one is a he said-she said.
It does fit in well with McGregor's belief that Aldo "pussied out" and is never coming back to fight the Irishman.
We'll find out soon enough whether that's even an option as he takes on Chad Mendes tomorrow instead for the interim 145-pound world title.
For more on that fight literally look anywhere on MMAmania.com.