For as much as Jose Aldo accomplished during his terrorizing reign as the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Featherweight champion — including defending the strap nine straight times — Michael Bisping wasn’t buying the Brazilian bomber as champ before getting knocked out by Max Holloway at UFC 212 last weekend (Sat., June 3, 2017) in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (see it).
And it has nothing to do with his past accolades, but more-so because he lost the belt after getting knocked out by Conor McGregor in only 13 seconds. And he was only able to regain his top spot after “Notorious” was stripped of his belt, paving the way for Aldo to shed the interim label he won by defeating Frankie Edgar at UFC 200.
“I think it’s fantastic that Max Holloway won and I think he had to win to put life back into the 145 [pound] division,” said Bisping said on his Believe You Me podcast (via MMA Fighting).
“Because honestly, Jose Aldo is a great fighter, Jose Aldo had an amazing career, Jose Aldo this, Jose Aldo that, all this fucking good stuff is so positive — I was not for one second buying Jose Aldo as the featherweight champion,” he continued. “I’m sorry, but he got knocked the [fuck] out in 13 seconds and then in his next fight he fights Frankie Edgar and all of the sudden he’s the champion again. So for me, I never bought into that.
As for Holloway, Bisping feels the young Hawaiian added new flavor to the division, especially now that he has shed the interim tag.
“On the other side, we had Max Holloway on a 10-fight win streak, getting better and better with every fight. The whole interim title fight at UFC 206 against Anthony Pettis, that was a little weak sauce so to speak but still, he beat him. Then he fights the undisputed champion which is bullshit because he’s not the undisputed champion because he just got knocked out in his fight previous.
“Now, fortunately, Max Holloway went out there and destroyed him,” he added. “Great fight, very, very entertaining fight. Well done. So now we have, I think it’s fair to say, a legitimate champion that nobody can disparage or take away from because yes, he got beat by Conor but that was three or four years ago now and Max is a different fighter today. So 145 has a solidified, definite, undisputed featherweight champion of the world, which I think is great for the division.”
Perhaps Joe Rogan was onto something ...
As for Bisping’s own Middleweight title reign, he already has one title defense under his belt after edging out Dan Henderson at UFC 204 back in Oct. 2016. But, “The Count” has been unable to go for his second straight defense because knee surgery — and other delays — have prohibited him from doing so.