Aldo already defeated Mendes once via knockout at UFC 142, but Mendes' teammate, TJ Dillashaw, recently obliterated Aldo's teammate and friend, Renan Barao, at UFC 173, an upset which reignited the tension between these two featherweight stars.
First, Aldo spoke with radio show No Mundo da Luta, saying that his team, Nova Uniao, would get "payback" on Mendes and Mendes' team, Team Alpha Male (quotes from that interview have been transcribed here by MMA Fighting's Guilherme Cruz).
Mendes isn't so sure about that.
He feels that this is Team Alpha Male's time to assume the throne and rule the 135- and 145-pound classes as Barao and Aldo had done for so many years, a transition that began with Dillashaw at UFC 173 and will continue August 2 at UFC 176 when he and Aldo square off a second time.
More specifically, Mendes said he's going to humiliate Aldo, tweeting the following in response to Aldo's "payback" comments:
This Team Alpha Male vs. Nova Uniao rivalry is getting fun, and it has the potential to last well into the future. Aldo and Barao are 27 years old, while Dillashaw and Mendes are 28 and 29, respectively, and they've all looked to be a step above everyone else in their weight classes, meaning that we could be in for rematches aplenty as the future shakes out.
Throw in the always-ready-to-make-a-title-run Urijah Faber on the Team Alpha Male side, and we have a juicy rivalry that could bring some much needed attention to the UFC's lighter weight classes.
What do you make of Mendes' comments? Will he extend Team Alpha Male's success over Nova Uniao, or will Aldo destroy him again as he did the first time?