Chad Mendes is one of the best 145-pound fighters in the planet. Unfortunately for the Team Alpha Male product, Mendes ran into a freak featherweight in Jose Aldo at UFC 142.
Despite being an outstanding amateur wrestler, Mendes was unable to take Aldo to the ground. Forced to play the champion's game, Mendes ate a brutal knee in the closing seconds of the first round. With one second left on the clock, Mendes ate a few more punches and the bout was deemed over.
After suffering his first defeat in the biggest fight of his career, Mendes will now have to go back to the drawing board. For the 26-year-old, dreams of capturing a UFC title are far from over, but he will have to do some climbing up ranks before getting another title shot.
Here are some opponents who we could see Mendes fighting next.