International Fight Week has been an absolute dream for mixed martial arts fans. We have seen three stacked fight cards over the course of three nights, and some insane breaking news. It's like Christmas morning.
A pivotal take-away from UFC 200 is that Jose Aldo is now the interim featherweight champion. The same man to dominate the 145 pounds division has earned the opportunity to rematch with the champion. Things have come full circle in a fascinating way.
Going into UFC 194, McGregor was the interim champ looking to unify the title against the Brazilian. In that instance, Mendes and McGregor had fought for the interim title because the champion was injured. At UFC 200, it was because Conor McGregor's next bout is at 170 pounds against Nate Diaz.
McGregor's win over Aldo was a stunning 13 second KO that ended a decade of undefeated dominance. It just goes to show that in MMA you can be on top for years and it can all come crumbling down in an instant of violence. That loss really took a mental toll on Aldo but rather than allow it to crush him, he is using it as motivation. He had laser focus going into this match even saying that he felt "like the Aldo of old".
Watching the bout at UFC 200, it was clear to see that the old Jose was indeed back. Frankie 'The Answer' Edgar is a formidable opponent but even he proved no match for Aldo's unbelievable striking.
'The Notorious One' was watching from cageside with intensity as the top contenders in his division battled for a chance to face him next. The result was an image that will no doubt become iconic.
But what happens next? When Aldo and McGregor clash for the featherweight title once again the result will send a ripple effect throughout the sport. If McGregor beats Jose again he will follow one of two potential paths. He will take a shot at another champion, attempting to become a two weight class champion as originally planned. Or, he may decide not to return to the 145 pounds division and the UFC would have to make him relinquish the belt.
If Jose Aldo is victorious a third fight would probably be made. After which I believe Conor would leave the division. Whatever happens it seems the Irishman is bound for higher weight classes. He seems to be anxious to prove himself against heavier fighters and big money bouts against people like 'Cowboy' Donald Cerrone could prove even more incentive to move up.
(Image via MMAWeekly.com)