Pettis, Holloway Talks UFC 206, Eventual Aldo Fight
Anthony Pettis and Max Holloway have suddenly found themselves in a title fight.
When the UFC 206 main event was cancelled, Holloway and Pettis’s pivotal featherweight matchup was moved to the main event and an interim title was introduced. With Conor McGregor stripped of his belt, Holloway and Pettis will fight for a chance to unify the titles against now undisputed champion Jose Aldo.
Both fighters realize the strange nature of the division’s current landscape. Aldo, the division’s former ruler, was viciously knocked out by McGregor less than a year ago. Now, because of McGregor’s inactivity in the featherweight division, Aldo is once again the champion. There is some question as to what impact the knockout loss had on Aldo, and whether anyone really considers him the champion given what McGregor did to him.
Speaking on a conference call ahead of their UFC 206 main event in Toronto, Pettis and Holloway were asked to look ahead to an eventual fight with Aldo.
"For me, Jose Aldo is still Jose Aldo, man," Pettis said "Everybody loses. Even the greatest lose sometimes. Even after 13 seconds, what he did with Conor McGregor, he still has the history that had. He’s a dominant champ for a long time. It’s not like all of a sudden he sucks because he got knocked out by Conor McGregor."
Max Holloway was not nearly as polite when speaking of the Brazilian champion. Holloway has been chasing a fight with Aldo for months, but Aldo has reportedly turned him down in an effort to secure an unlikely rematch with McGregor.
"That motherf*cker, he got diagnosed with that f*cking p*ssy-itis that he’s been f*cking having lately," Holloway said. "And whenever he wants the vaccine, he can come and get it. So we’ll see what happens.
"I ain’t friends with the guy. I don’t follow him on social media or whatever. I don’t talk to him, I don’t retweet stuff he posts or have conversations with the guy. So who knows what’s going through his mind? Only his coaches and only himself. But we’ll see what happens. We’ll see what happens after Dec. 10 and we’ll find out. We’re going to go out there, you guys are going to get a great fight, and after Dec. 10, we’ll see what’s up with that guy’s mind."
Pettis, the former lightweight champion who was successful in his first 145 lb. bout, knows that the interim title means little. More of a promotional tool to sell a pay-per-view than a title that really makes sense, the interim belt does nothing more but grant the winner a title shot at Aldo. For Pettis, who has dreamed of being a two-division champion, UFC 206 provides a shortcut to that goal. Until then, Aldo’s public image is a trivial concern.
"[Aldo] had a great career before Conor McGregor," Pettis said. "There’s a reason why Conor let this happen. If Conor really wanted to fight at 145 pounds again, he would’ve done it and defended his title. So it’s not up to Jose Aldo, it’s not up to Conor McGregor, it’s not up to me or Max who’s the undisputed champ. We’re just doing our job. We’re going out there and fighting these fights and trying to prove that we’re the best in the world. And if that guy (Aldo) is there and the opportunity is there, eventually all of us will take it."