Many mixed martial arts fans were disappointed when they heard the news that WEC Featherweight Champion and pound-for-pound great Jose Aldo had been offered a fight against Kenny Florian in the UFC’s lightweight division but had declined the proposition. Tatame.com broke the news, which came shortly after Aldo stopped another 145-pound opponent in defense of his featherweight strap.
Aldo knocked out Manny Gamburyan at WEC 51 to make his second successful title defense, looking as dominant and poised as ever. From there, speculation began that Aldo would be moving up to the UFC’s lightweight division in search of a real challenge. Even though some of the comments that bred the speculation came from Aldo’s camp, when the actual opportunity to make the step up presented itself Aldo’s camp and managers decided it would be best to allow the 24-year old more time to develop and gain weight naturally.
UFC President Dana White recently appeared on Comcast SportsNet’s Fight Fix program, where he discussed Aldo turning down the fight with Florian.
“Here’s the thing, Jose Aldo’s been talking about moving up to 155lbs.,” White said. “Well, we had a slot and said, ‘alright, you want to move up to 155lbs and fight Kenny Florian?’ and he said, ‘Uh, never mind’. It depends on what this kid wants to do. If he wants to stay in the WEC and defend that title, that’s cool, but they were talking at one point about moving to [155lbs] so we talked to him and said, ‘How would you like to move to the UFC’s ’55lb division and take on Kenny?’, and they turned it down.”
Aldo is tentatively set to defend his 145-pound strap against Canadian striker Mark Hominick, though no date has been set or official word passed down.