Aldo injured his ribs in training a couple of weeks out from when he was set to battle McGregor. After undergoing treatment for several days, Aldo announced he was withdrawing from the bout, and Chad Mendes stepped in. Some fans understood Aldo’s decision, since making weight and then fighting one of the planet’s best 145érs with trashed ribs, isn’t easy….Others, however, like McGregor, were heavily critical of Aldo, and argued fighters compete less than 100% all the time.
Well, following Penn’s induction into the UFC Hall of Fame this past weekend, the legendary fighter weighed-in on the situation. Here is some of what he had to say about Aldo’s decision and his critics (quotes via MMA Fighting.com):
“Aldo, you’re the old lion,” Penn said. “You’re the champion. You’re the one with the record, you’re the one with the gold, you’re the one with all the records. The lion doesn’t care that the sheep laugh at him. Remember that. The lion just stays there. The animals make noise and tease. The guy with the belt is the lion.”
“If Aldo is not 100 percent, I do not want to see him inside that ring,” Penn said. “I do not want to see him in that ring if he’s not 100 percent.”
How about that? Indeed, the lion does not care if the sheep laugh at him…Great metaphor aside, Penn certainly isn’t the only one who didn’t want to see Aldo-McGregor go down, if the champ wasn’t at least close to 100%. Sure, from a business perspective, people argued that the UFC had spent a lot of money marketing the fight, yadda, yadda, yadda, but it sounds like Mendes-McGregor raked in a ton of cash any ways,
Now, hopefully, we will get to see Ald0-McGregor later this year, and there won’t be any questions regarding the Brazilian star’s health when it happens. So far, no specific dates for the fight have been floated.
If it’s somehow possible that you haven’t heard, McGregor stopped Mendes in the second round at UFC 189 to become interm champ.