Andre Pederneiras (right) says Jose Aldo will fight teammates if need be. | Marcelo Alonso/Sherdog.com
UFC featherweight champion Jose Aldo was taking antibiotics for a toe infection just days before his April 30 title defense against Mark Hominick at UFC 129, Nova UniÃ£o leader Andre Pederneiras told Sherdog.com on Tuesday.
“He suffered a cut on his toe [on April 23] and it got infected with bacteria,” said Pederneiras. “He went through heavy medical treatment with antibiotics and anti-inflammatory pills from Sunday to Tuesday. He took the heavy dosage so that he wouldn’t have to take more drugs closer to the fight.”
Rumors that Aldo wasn’t feeling well began swirling during Friday’s “Super Seven” meeting in Toronto, when the Brazilian made an early exit from a Q&A session featuring all of the UFC’s current titlists. The talk only intensified post-fight, when cameras caught cornerman Marlon Sandro rebuking Aldo for saying he should have taken more antibiotics.
“Antibiotics wouldn’t have helped at all,” Sandro told his teammate. “You’re the champion, kid. F--k the antibiotics. Everything is OK. You fought well, smooth and composed.”
Just as Aldo did following his five-round unanimous decision over Hominick, Pederneiras offered praise for the guts displayed by the Canadian challenger, who overcame a gruesome hematoma to come on strong in the championship rounds.
“I can’t say whether [the fact Aldo took antibiotics] affected his performance. I’m not a doctor,” said Pederneiras. “I prefer to give credit to Hominick’s effort for taking the fight that deep, rather than saying if the medicine affected him or not.”
Immediately after Aldo’s win, UFC President Dana White noted that the promotion was already eying the champ’s next title defense, which could come against unbeaten Team Alpha Male product Chad Mendes on Aug. 6 in Philadelphia. However, another potential contender could emerge at UFC 131 on June 11, when Kenny Florian makes his featherweight debut against Aldo campmate Diego Nunes.
On the prospect of the latter fight, Pederneiras was clear: he has no problem with seeing two of his fighters step into the cage across from one another. But the team may not have to worry about that just yet.
“I think it will be against Chad Mendes,” Pederneiras says of Aldo’s next fight, “but Diego and everyone from Nova UniÃ£o knows that if they have to fight against each other, they will. I just don’t know how we would manage it, but they know they’re fighters and it’s their job. If the boss orders it, we’ll work on that situation. They’ll fight against whoever they’re matched with.”
Colin Foster contributed to this report.