Jose Aldo has fired back at former UFC lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov for saying that the Brazilian is past his prime and is only fighting for money.
Khabib made the comments during a press conference in Russia in August and received a lot of slack from the MMA community afterwards.
“A guy wins one fight and everyone starts talking. … Let him fight Petr [Yan] the same way, then we can say he’s peaking again,” Khabib said. “You saw what he did [against Yan], he closed up and waited for the ref to stop the fight. That shows that you’re not at your peak. If you’re getting hit and you’re conscious and you’re not defending yourself, I call those fighters businessmen. They come out to make money.”
Jose Aldo Responds To Khabib
Speaking to MMA Fighting, Aldo fired back at Khabib, saying that he’s just trying to stay in the limelight with his trash talking now that he’s retired.
“He’s saying you can’t peak again, but we just saw an example with Glover [Teixeira], who got there, lost, and got there again at age 42 and won [the UFC title], completely dominated the champion, took him down and submitted him,” Aldo said. “[Israel] Adesanya himself fought [Jan Blachowicz] for five rounds, a pretty boring fight, two high-level athletes, and Glover, who’s older than me [won]. Sometimes Khabib talks too much. He’s not doing much these days, he’s retired, so he’s looking for [attention] that way.”
Khabib Turned Down 2016 Bout
Aldo also revealed that he was offered an interim lightweight title fight against Khabib in 2016, but ‘The Eagle’ turned it down.
“I was traveling when [my coach] ‘Dede’ [Pederneiras] called me,” Aldo said. “The [UFC] had offered me this fight and we took it. I said, ‘What? I want that, I’m in.’ I respect everybody, but that opportunity … I was the featherweight champion, and [Khabib] didn’t think it was a good [idea]. I don’t know if he was expecting to fight somebody else, I don’t know what he was thinking at the time. I think it could have been a great fight.
“I wanted to test myself. Everybody always asks me. … It’s funny, everybody thinks I train wrestling a lot. No, man, I usually do the same training with my team, so, to me, it would have been a really tough test. I’ve always fought against American wrestling and it was hard to take me down, so it would be a tough test against him, if he would be able to impose his takedown game against me knowing that I have pretty good takedown defense as well.”
Do you agree with Jose Aldo?