Holloway Explains Injury, Fires Back at Aldo

The mess at the top of the featherweight division has yet to be tidied up, but a title unification bout between Jose Aldo and Max Holloway is the next logical step.

A recent interview with Jose Aldo, however, hinted that there may be something entirely different in store for the division’s champion.

Aldo told MMAFighting’s Ariel Helwani that he has been offered an interim lightweight title fight — that’s right — but the unnamed opponent (later confirmed to be Khabib Nurmagomedov) turned the fight down.

In that same interview, Aldo blasted Holloway for calling him out to fight at UFC 208 in February and then backtracking.

Holloway talked to FOX Sports and detailed why he changed his tune on the Brooklyn event, and his issues with Aldo’s statements:

“I don’t know what the hell he’s talking about. Telling me I knew before the fight — I didn’t know (expletive) before the fight. When they told me in the cage after I won that they wanted the fight Feb. 11, I thought it was 10 weeks away so I’d take two weeks off and then have an eight week camp to get ready for him. Then after everything, my adrenaline was on high and was going crazy, they got me hyped and I said what I said and then I figured out it was eight weeks so I was like holy (expletive) that’s fast but I said that’s OK we can do this.”

“The next morning I woke my (expletive) ankle was swollen as an elephant’s leg. I told the UFC ASAP what was up and I don’t know why they didn’t announce it, but I went to the doctors as soon as possible and I was told I can’t do nothing for four to six weeks,” Holloway explained. “No contact, no nothing on my ankle. I can’t be kicking, I can’t be doing anything. I found out a re-injured an old injury in my ankle and I let them know I’m out four to six weeks.

“I guess he’s coming out taunting and running his mouth but at the end of the day if I wasn’t injured I’d fight his ass any day of the week. I’d fight him tomorrow.”

Holloway pointed towards Aldo’s own injury history as a reason for why the Brazilian champion has no right to criticize him. Aldo has pulled out of a number of title fights (the latest being the first date for his bout with McGregor last year) and according to Holloway, Aldo turned down the opportunity to fight him last month.

“This guy is the last guy who should be talking about injuries. This mother (expletive) is the last guy that should be talking about injuries and being able to fight,” Holloway said. “He wants to talk about he never turned down an opponent in his life and he don’t pick his opponents. I can clearly — he said this, not me — he got offered to fight me. He got offered to fight me at (UFC) 205 and 206 and he would not fight me. He said he would rather fight Anthony Pettis and then he didn’t take that fight either. He’s saying ‘I don’t turn down fights’ — go ask Sean Shelby if Max Holloway ever turned down a fight. I never turned down a fight in my life.”

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