Garbrandt Wants to Fight Aldo, McGregor

After Cody Garbrandt defeated Dominick Cruz to win the bantamweight title at UFC 207, the Team Alpha Male product was already being thrust into discussions of his next matchup. He called for a rematch with Cruz, conventional wisdom said he would fight former champ T.J. Dillashaw. Now days later, Garbrandt is thinking even bigger.

Appearing on the MMA Hour with Ariel Helwani, Garbrandt said that he is looking at a possible super-fight in the featherweight division rather than a traditional title defense.

““I need to sit down with Dana [White] and Sean [Shelby], and find out the biggest money fight for me,” Garbrandt said. “I know I could go up and fight with Jose Aldo. He has wins over my teammates, he’s a legend, and I’d like to test his chin. I know I hit hard, and I’m just getting started. And I could also have the biggest fight with Conor [McGregor]. I could easily go up. My homie Nate Diaz choked him out, and I can’t believe he’s pound-for-pound No. 2 on the list, with, you know he got choked out.”

A matchup with McGregor is unlikely, given that the Irish superstar has moved on from the 145 lb division and is unlikely to return. He and Garbrandt do have a bit of history, however, as they scuffled briefly on The Ultimate Fighter 22 after McGregor insulted Garbrandt’s then-teammate T.J. Dillashaw.

Times have changed, with Dillashaw having left Team Alpha Male and thus losing any semblance of friendship he had with Garbrandt. The two are likely to collide in a grudge match, with Dillashaw having won back-to-back fights against #2 contenders since losing the belt to Cruz in January.

Garbrandt welcomes any challenge, but seems set on punching up a weight class.

“Yeah,” he said. “Whatever benefits me. I’m the champ. I’m the champ. I just went out there and beat one of the best pound-for-pounds, who’s been on the pound-for-pound

    for however long now. I want the biggest draw. I think Jose Aldo…I want the biggest challenge. I’m in this sport to challenge myself. I just beat Dominick handily, and I’m ready for a bigger challenge. I think Jose Aldo is tough, I respect him, but I want to test his chin. I know I hit like a Mack Truck. Like I said, I’m just getting started, just getting comfortable.

    “And you know, Conor, too. He knows that I’d go up to 150 and catchweight with him. Jose Aldo I’ll go up to 45. But yeah. I’m excited for the potential match-ups for me. I feel like I’m one of the biggest draws. I’m the biggest draw for Conor in the division, you know what I mean? I’m a rising star. Jose Aldo needs a fight. I think that he went out there and said that he’d like to fight me too.”

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