Disdain for Conor McGregor runs deep in Ultimate Fighting Championship featherweight titleholder Jose Aldo.
Aldo will meet the interim champion in a five-round unification bout atop UFC 194 on Dec. 12 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. He attended a special roundtable with Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira and Pedro Rizzo at the 2015 Rio Sports & Health conference promoted by Dr. Marcio Tannure on Saturday in Rio de Janeiro, and the forthcoming showdown with McGregor was part of the discussion.
The two featherweights were originally scheduled to collide in July before a rib injury forced Aldo to withdraw and left McGregor to face Chad Mendes for interim gold instead. The Irishman stopped Mendes on second-round punches and continues to bombard Aldo with verbal insults.
“After we saw his fight against Chad, we could see that everything was working out as planned and that we would win the fight. I mean, we will win the fight,” Aldo said. “Be sure that I’ll put my hands on him like I’ve never put my hands on any other opponent. I can just see the win ahead of me, and I’m going after it. I’m not going to lose focus. Of course, I’m going to leave him seriously injured and bring my belt back.”
Aldo ran into McGregor backstage during taping for Season 22 of “The Ultimate Fighter.”
“Whenever he sees a camera, he starts to play the character and put on a show, but when he met me without cameras or an audience, he didn’t say anything,” said Aldo, who has won 18 fights in a row. “I could see that during filming, when I got into the house and he was not being advised. He came to shake my hand, and I thought the fight would start right there. I heard he even went to complain to [UFC President] Dana [White] and [UFC CEO] Lorenzo [Fertitta] about not telling him I was going to be there. You’ll see his mask fall down soon.”