Out of all the fighters who have faced Conor McGregor, Jose Aldo was undoubtedly the one most affected by his mental warfare.
Aldo had to listen to Conor’s endless chirping as he rose up in the featherweight ranks. He had to endure an entire world tour’s worth of insults before their first cancelled bout, and then another round of media leading up to their fateful meeting at UFC 194 in 2015. All that endless trash talk led him to rush forward recklessly and get KO’d just 13 seconds into their fight.
So if anyone ‘gets’ the kind of anger that led to Khabib Nurmagomedov jumping the fence at UFC 229 and eagle stomping his way through McGregor’s corner, it’s Jose Aldo. Aldo shared his feelings on the matter with ESPN’s Brett Okamoto at UFC 230, saying he hoped Khabib got away without any punishment at all over the incident.
”I understand the reaction of Khabib,” Aldo said through a translator. “No, it’s not his fault, we shouldn’t blame him for his actions because it’s the UFC letting McGregor do whatever he wants, in the past and here in New York. So it’s not Khabib’s fault. No time, no nothing for him.”
Jose Aldo doesn’t believe Khabib Nurmagomedov should be punished for going over the cage at UFC 229. And sounds like he holds UFC partially responsible. pic.twitter.com/lFl4x4S1qj
— Brett Okamoto (@bokamotoESPN) November 4, 2018
Unfortunately for Nurmagomedov, it’ll be the Nevada State Athletic Commission making the determination, and they’re liable to see things quite a bit differently than the honor-based Brazilian.
We’re now more than a month removed from the incident at UFC 229 that saw Khabib jump Dillon Danis and members of his entourage storm the cage to attack McGregor. A meeting is set for December 10th that will hopefully resolve everything. Dana White has suggested a six month suspension as reasonable, which seems hopeful but not out of the question in a world where athletic commissions make their money off big fights in their jurisdiction.
With Khabib’s manager already promising mind blowing news, maybe they all know something we don’t. Maybe Jose Aldo’s reasoning is shared at least in part by the NSAC, who have dealt first hand with McGregor’s antics in the past. At this point, it’s hard to find many fans unwilling to let bygones be bygones if it means getting “The Eagle” back in the cage sooner rather than later.