Chad Mendes is widely-panned as the No. 1 contender in the UFC’s featherweight division.
Since a loss to current champion Jose Aldo, Mendes has reeled off five consecutive victories – four of which have been finishes.
However, it appears as if Aldo is moving to the UFC’s lightweight division. So, where does that leave Mendes?
“I truly believe that I’m the guy who can beat Jose Aldo and I really want that shot,” said Mendes, who was an analyst on FOX Sports for UFC 169 Saturday night. “I’ve grown so much since the last time we fought. I’ve completely changed my game and I’m excited to face him.”
Mendes suffered a first round knockout loss in Brazil to Aldo, leaving him to work his way back.
While “Money” is a viable contender, Anthony Pettis appears to be the next foe for Aldo. Pettis is the current UFC lightweight champion and agreed to meet Aldo next after the card.
That puts the Team Alpha Male fighter in a weird situation, as he explained.
“I’m buddies with Pettis, and as a fan, I’d love to see that fight,” he said. “But I’m the true No. 1 contender. I should be fighting for the belt next.”
Mendes does have a contingency plan in place – if the UFC would like to hear it.
“Maybe me and Cub Swanson can fight for the title (if Aldo vacates the belt),” he said. “I don’t think Aldo should take the belt with him and put the whole division on hold.”
Front-Page Photo Credit: Kyle Terada