Jose Aldo Wants to Finish Fights in UFC Contract to Start Boxing, Coach Says

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistAugust 30, 2017

Jun 3, 2017; Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Jose Aldo (red gloves) fights Max Hollway (blue gloves) during UFC 212 at Rio Olympic Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jason Silva-USA TODAY Sports
Jason Silva-USA TODAY Sports

Former UFC featherweight champion Jose Aldo may soon follow in the footsteps of Conor McGregor and take his talents to the boxing ring. 

"He’s training boxing because he has this dream of competing in professional boxing," his coach, Andre Pederneiras told . "If it was up to him, he’d fight all of his UFC fights (left on the contract) in three months and go box. He wants to box professionally."

"He doesn’t want to stay inactive for a long time, and there’s both sides: He definitely wants to finish the contract," he added.

Aldo has four fights remaining on his UFC deal.

He has lost two of his last three fights, however, including his loss to McGregor in Dec. 2015 that cost him his featherweight title before winning it back against Frankie Edgar in July 2016. He lost it again vs. Max Holloway in June.

Prior to the McGregor fight, Aldo was a perfect 7-0 in his UFC career, defending the featherweight title in all seven of those fights. 

McGregor's decision to make the crossover to boxing—and his decent showing and the huge paycheck he garnered—may have a ripple effect in the UFC. At the very least, fighters like Aldo could leverage a potential move to the ring in the attempt to gain bigger money while negotiating with the UFC. And for UFC fighters with the right reputation, making the move to boxing—even if only for a fight or two—could potentially lead to a major payday on its own as well.

The counterargument, however, will be that the appeal of McGregor facing Floyd Mayweather won't be replicated. McGregor is arguably the UFC's biggest and most marketable star, Mayweather put his perfect record on the line and was already boxing's most notorious figure and the novelty of seeing an MMA fighter face a boxer may have already run out.

Nonetheless, it would appear last weekend's superfight now has MMA fighters like Aldo carefully weighing their options. As for Aldo's next fight, that remains up in the air.

"We’re waiting for the UFC," Pederneiras said. "We’re trying to get this fight done, against Cub Swanson or someone else. He wants to fight (against) someone well ranked, and wait for an opportunity to fight for the belt."