It seems like it's been ages since we've seen Jose Aldo step into the Octagon, hasn't it? We haven't seen hide nor hair of the former featherweight champion-turned-interim champion-turned-just plain old featherweight champion again since he unsuccessfully campaigned to be released from his UFC contract last year, even as featherweight interim champion Max Holloway repeatedly attempted to smack talk his way into a fight with him.
But with Aldo and Holloway now set to unify their belts at UFC 212 in June, it seems that "Junior" is finally start to peek out of his shell to engage in a little trash talk of his own, minimal as it may be. Speaking with Combate, Aldo explained what he thought about Holloway's skillz, or lack thereof.
"He's a tall guy, but I have good reach, too," said Aldo. "It's no trouble, it's only a few centimeters. He has an advantage being taller than me, but I don't see him being an expert anywhere. He's a kickboxer, he's versatile there, but his jiu-jitsu is so-so. He's not a complete fighter, but he's aggressive and dangerous."
While Holloway's grappling game has improved by leaps and bounds since he made his promotional debut back in 2012 (which was an astounding 15 fights ago), a jiu jitsu black belt of Aldo's level should still hold a distinct advantage over "Blessed" on the ground. Then again, the same could have (and was) said about Anthony Pettis prior to his clash with Holloway at UFC 206, and we all know how that turned out.
Could we actually see a precision striker like Aldo attempt to turn his fight with Holloway into a ground battle at #UFC212? It would certainly be treated as an aberration by many fans, but to quote Gus Johnson, sometimes these things happen in MMA.