Daniel Cormier: There's no respect for 'smaller dudes' Conor McGregor, Max Holloway if it weren't for Jose Aldo

by Christina S. Brown
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Daniel Cormier credit Jose Aldo for giving the lighter weight divisions legitimacy.

Aldo (31-8 MMA, 13-7 UFC) returns vs. Jonathan Martinez (19-4 MMA, 10-3 UFC) in Saturday’s UFC 301 (Pay-per-view/ESPN/ESPN+) co-main occasion at Farmasi Enviornment in Rio de Janeiro.

Aldo, a former WEC and UFC featherweight champion, had a dominant reign within the octagon with seven title defenses earlier than ultimately opting to drop all the way down to bantamweight. Cormier praised Aldo for drawing individuals in along with his performances.

“I didn’t respect small guys to that diploma earlier than Aldo,” Cormier mentioned on his ESPN present “Good Man/Unhealthy Man” with Chael Sonnen. “So there isn’t a Max (Holloway), Conor (McGregor), or any respect for the smaller dudes if Aldo didn’t paved the way along with his performances. The second that I really acknowledged his star was when he fought Chad Mendes. When Chad’s behind him, he’s received a lock on the waist, Jose turns, provides him a knee, places Chad down, jumps over the octagon, rushes to the group in Rio and he’s holding the flag.

“They’re choosing him up, leaping. It was a mob scene. I assumed to myself, ‘Wow, if I can have one second, only one second to really feel what this man is feeling proper now, my complete athletics profession could be full.’ One second to really feel what he felt, after watching his pleasure, his pleasure, and the best way he impressed a rustic, the best way he impressed his metropolis. I wished it one time, bro. That’s what Jose Aldo was.”

Aldo was inducted into the UFC Corridor of Fame after retiring in fall of 2022. Nevertheless, it didn’t take lengthy for “The King of Rio” to get the itch to compete once more as he’s set to finish the ultimate struggle on his UFC contract vs. Martinez.

For extra on the cardboard, go to MMA Junkie’s occasion hub for UFC 301.

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