UFC featherweight contender Chad Mendes will get his second crack at champion Jose Aldo at UFC 179 this evening, but that doesn't mean he hasn't been listening to the banter of rising star Conor McGregor.
During Wednesday's edition of UFC Tonight, Money said he actually looks forward to a showdown with The Notorious sooner than later.
Mendes on @TheNotoriousMMA: "The guy's a joke. I look at him and see dollar signs. I'm gonna get paid big time, I'm gonna smash the dude."
— UFC Tonight (@UFCTonight) October 23, 2014
One day earlier, McGregor repeatedly mocked Mendes during an episode of UFC: Beyond the Octagon, where Mendes expressed the same sentiment about a potential McGregor fight.
Although UFC President Dana White indicated that McGregor could get the next crack at featherweight gold after a definitive win over Dustin Poirier at UFC 178 last month (h/t MMA Fighting), the Irish superstar opted not to wait on the sidelines for very long.
After four straight wins inside the Octagon, McGregor will square off with powerful, stocky striker Dennis Siver at UFC Fight Night 59 in January.
With another clear-cut victory, it would be borderline impossible to deny McGregor the winner of Aldo vs. Mendes II.
After getting knocked out by Aldo in their first encounter at UFC 142 in January 2012 (the only loss of his career), Mendes has rallied back with five straight wins, four of which came via knockout.
While Mendes' striking has unquestionably improved by leaps and bounds, Aldo has proved to be a cut above the rest time and time again at 145 pounds. He is riding a 17-fight win streak and looking to make his eighth straight title defense inside the Octagon.
Will Mendes be able to pull the stunning upset tonight and set up a grudge match with McGregor? Or will Aldo and/or Siver come through in the clutch?