by Jason Howard Kelly
The UFC lightweight title fight between Conor McGregor and Rafael dos Anjos is OFF after the Brazilian broke his foot.
It was going to be one of the most-anticipated bouts in recent times, but it has now been postponed due to the injury.
The UFC are reportedly now trying to find a replacement to fight McGregor on less than two weeks’ notice, however, nothing at this point in time has been confirmed by the organisation.
This is a huge let down for the UFC, as UFC 196 was shaping up to be one of the most historic fight cards in the company’s history. Unfortunately, injuries happen and plans change, and so now Dana White must find a way to save the UFC 196 card with only 12 days to do it.
The most obvious first place to look was to McGregor’s last opponent, José Aldo. After his 13-second knockout loss to McGregor back in December, Aldo insisted that he would not take another fight in the UFC unless it was a rematch against McGregor for the Featherweight Championship. Now, just two months later, Aldo has his shot due to the injury to Rafael dos Anjos. He’ll surely jump all over this opportunity, right?
Nope. According to Aldo’s coach, the former Featherweight Champion is not in good enough shape to fight McGregor at UFC 196 in two weeks.
“Dana (White) called me, telling what happened and asking if Aldo was in shape to fight,” Pederneiras told Combate. “I said he wasn’t and that there wasn’t enough time, and unfortunately he wouldn’t be able to fight next week.”
This is a bad look for Aldo, who did quite a lot of whining and complaining after his loss back in December, claiming that he would only consider fighting McGregor in a rematch or he would not fight at all. Now he gets a golden opportunity and he’s out of shape? What has Aldo been doing for the past two months? Look at other fighters such as Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone, whose name is already being considered as a potential opponent for McGregor in two weeks. Cerrone just fought this past Sunday night in a victorious bout over Alex Oliveira. Cerrone is willing to put his body through an excruciating weight cut to earn a shot at McGregor, whereas Aldo can’t be bothered to stay in shape in order to have a chance to step in as a replacement.
In that case, good riddance with Aldo. For a fighter who claims to be one of the best he sure isn’t carrying himself that way. Let’s hope that Dana White and the UFC find a worthy and willing opponent for McGregor soon. Names such as Donald Cerrone, Frankie Edgar, and Nate Diaz have been mentioned as potential opponents. One of these fighters could end up earning the opportunity that Aldo wanted and, quite frankly, they will deserve it more than he does.