UFC 142: 10 Reasons Jose Aldo Will Be Too Much for Chad Mendes
There's a reason why Jose Aldo is the king of the featherweight division.
The humble Brazilian rose up the ranks thanks to his neck-break pace he sets on his opponents and if you're not ready to handle the pressure, you'll be dispatched quickly and thoroughly.
Cub Swanson can attest to that, who was barely settled into his battle with Aldo before the Black House fighter launched a double flying knee to the face of the Floridian, who was finished off in just eight seconds of the opening round.
Though Aldo's next challenger in Chad Mendes has proven to be a formidable opponent, here are some reason why Aldo will have just too much gusto for the American.
For some time, Aldo believed that Mendes would be the next man he would face inside the cage.
Well before his battle with Kenny Florian in his last outing this September, Aldo felt that the Team Alpha Male product was more deserving, though he inevitably faced The Ultimate Fighter alumnus first, deftly defeating him with a five round rout.
Now that Mendes is on deck, Aldo has the chance to face a man who he feels is most deserving.
Not to mention a little rivalry that has since brewed between Mendes and Aldo which began thanks to the Californian poking fun at a budding soccer rivalry in Brazil between that of Aldo's team and their biggest nemesis.
If you've ever seen the movie Green Street Hooligans then you would know just how serious some people take their soccer.
9. Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Black Belt
This isn't to say that dominating your manager on the mat is any indication of your jiu-jitsu prowess. However, Aldo is a proven, formidable force on the ground, even if nobody knows it yet.
A black belt under the touted Andre Pederneiras—a former UFC title challenger who has also awarded the same honor to the likes of Thales Leites and BJ Penn—Aldo has used his skills to medal several times in his native Brazil against some of the better grapplers in his division.
His striking repertoire is vast and impressive.
The aforementioned battle with Swanson is the best example of Aldo's knees, which ended their No. 1 contender in just eight seconds, thanks to some double flying knees.
Should Mendes telegraph an errant takedown, expect a knee to greet him on his way in.
An aspiring soccer player in his years as a youth, Aldo parlayed his powerful kicks from the fields to the cage, where he has since cultivated leg crippling strikes.
Urijah Faber had to be carried to his corner by his trainer once Aldo began to connect time and time again on the lead leg of the "California Kid" in their featherweight battle some time ago.
I'm sure Aritano Barbosa could attest to the kicks of Aldo as well, since he was knocked out in just 20 seconds of their bout.
6. Powerful Puncher
As if it weren't enough that Aldo has some power in his knees and kicks, the Brazilian can also level opponents with his hard hitting punches.
In his battle with Mark Hominick in a "Fight of the Night" performance, Aldo dropped "The Machine" on several occasions in their featherweight affair.
Hominick survived to the final bell, though former title challenger Manny Gamburyan never fared much better as the Armenian was knocked out with punches inside of the second round opposite thanks to the wily Aldo.
His striking skills, takedown defense and jiu-jitsu arsenal make "Junior" a dangerous force for any man to have to deal with.
In the past, Aldo has been able to stifle the wrestling skills of Mike Brown by fending off the takedown and later transitioning to the back mount where he finished off the touted featherweight star with strikes.
Urijah Faber, perhaps one of the better grapplers at both 135 and 145-pounds, was brought out of his game by the leg snapping kicks of Aldo, who dominated the former featherweight kingpin from start to finish of their five round battle.
Even against the most tested vet, Aldo makes them look amateur.
4. Cardio Tested
In his last two outings as champion, Aldo has had to go the full five rounds against formidable opponents in Mark Hominick and Kenny Florian.
Hominick in particular tested the resolve of the champion, who was slowing down in the later stages of his bout, where rumor had it that the Brazilian had been suffering from a lingering infection which hampered his weight cut and ultimately his performance.
In his battle with Florian, Aldo came in much better shape and was fresh from start to finish, proving that his cardio was long in question.
Jose Aldo has very rarely seen adversity in the cage but he got plenty of it in his battle with Mark Hominick at UFC 129.
In the later stages of the bout Aldo was visibly fatigued and the Canadian capitalized by taking him to the ground where he laid down a steady dose of ground and pound.
The Nova Uniao star remained vigilant and focused while on bottom and though he absorbed some blows, he wasn't worse for the wear and eventually met the final bell and took home the decision victory.
2. Tested Champion
Aldo first scored gold in November of 2009 when he defeated then WEC champion Mike Brown, defeating the powerhouse with a second round TKO.
Since then, Aldo has transitioned to the Octagon where he was awarded the UFC title upon leaving the now defunct WEC promotion, where he defended his belt twice against Urijah Faber and Manny Gamburyan—finishing off The Ultimate Fighter finalist with a second round knockout.
In the UFC, Aldo has also defended his new title twice against formidable opposition in the aforementioned Hominick and Kenny Florian, taking both men into deep waters where he took decisive decision victories over the world-ranked foes.
Four title defenses spanning two different organizations, Aldo has solidified himself as the 145-pound king time and time again, something that Chad Mendes has even come close to accomplishing.
After four title defenses and sitting atop the mantle of the 145-pound class, Aldo is all sorts of confident nowadays.
The Brazilian owns victories over Alexandre Nogueira, TUF winner Jonathon Brookins, UFC vets Cub Swanson, Mark Hominick, Kenny Florian and former champions Urijah Faber and Mike Brown—needless to say, after dispatching fighters that garner the prestige of these men, you would be confident too.
The once beaten fighter hasn't suffered defeat since 2005 and is currently riding a 12-fight win streak and holds a 10-0 mark under the Zuffa banner.
Mendes will be arguably his toughest test to date, but Aldo has since cultivated an heir of invincibility which is warranted granted his memorable run so far.