Super Saturday 2013 gave us one of the more unpredictable nights in UFC history, and our job this morning is to make some sense of all of it. We saw the trend of title contenders being knocked off continue. We saw three new Strikeforce imports make a huge dent on FX in their respective Octagon debuts. We saw a man who was at the top of the world just one year ago drop his third consecutive title fight against a Featherweight legend. It's time to see what we believe should be and could be in store for these men in the not so distant future. Let's start with the champion.
This is the picture of a fighter in his prime. At the ripe young age of 26-years-old, Jose Aldo Junior improved his record to 22-1 after making the 6th consecutive successful defense of his Featherweight crown. Aside from the Mendes finish, he's not showing the dominance he showed us against Faber or the flare he showed us against Swanson and Brown. He was a smart and calculated pitbull early against Edgar last night but he slowed in the championship rounds, just like he did against Hominick. You can attribute that to the lethal weight cut he has to make in order to defend this title. He can go the distance with these men and beat them every time, but he's being held back early knowing that he could potentially end up in another Hominick situation late in the contest due to all the weight he has to cut to make 145 as he heads into his late twenties.
UFC President Dana White was very adamant that Frankie Edgar move down to Featherweight not only to help out the division, but because he was taking some crazy punishment from much bigger men. If he is truly concerned about his fighters health and seeing one of the most talented men on his roster to continue at peak performance for years to come I suggest he make the same plea to Jose Aldo. Aldo has done all he can do at Featherweight. He's taken on all comers since the WEC days and he's beaten them handily. None of these fights have warranted a rematch. If he vacated the belt to move up to 155 we could have a four-man tournament featuring the likes of Ricardo Lamas, Korean Zombie, Frankie Edgar and Dustin Poirier to crown a new champion.
Anthony Pettis texted White during last nights post fight presser to challenge Aldo for the 145 crown. I believe "Showtime" did this because he saw Aldo slow in those final rounds and he believes this is a very winnable fight for him. Of course he may also be frustrated with the amount of time he's had to wait to get a title shot in his own division and he sees this as an opportunity to possibly become a two-division ZUFFA champion right here, right now. I'd rather see Aldo fight Pettis at 155. I know it's a bad business move for Aldo to move up in weight for anything but a title fight. It would be very difficult to pass Pettis over again and give Aldo the winner of Henderson vs. Melendez but this is what I think would be best for the company right now. Aldo deserves the choice to either fight Anthony Pettis at 155 in a number one contenders bout or to be given an immediate shot at the winner of Benson Henderson vs. Gilbert Melendez.
If Aldo does stay at 145 to defend his title, which is the likely scenario, he gets either Ricardo Lamas, Korean Zombie or Anthony Pettis next. Ricardo Lamas may be the most deserving of the three right now but this is the UFC, Lamas doesn't have the name recognition the other two men have. Dollars trump sense every time and the money fight here is Aldo vs. Pettis. Zombie, Lamas, Edgar, and Poirier will take on each other and whomever emerges the most impressive will get the next crack at Aldo or Pettis. I may be in the minority here, but for Aldo's sake, I'd like to see him move up to 155. Somebody important should ask him if that's what HE wants to do.