Holly Holm & José Aldo: What’s next for the best?
Friday April 15, 2016— After her stunning and savage knockout over Ronda Rousey at UFC 193, everyone was sure that Holly was going for a long and dominating reign as a champion. Her display of perfect foot work and deadly striking showed, what an elite level athlete was she. Her calm and humble attitude made sure fans understood what sportsman spirit is all about; she thanked Ronda for the match, she was down to earth, never spoke about how great was she, apart from that she wanted to be an active fighter, and she did not want to wait for Rousey’s return, this showed her love and respect for the sport.
But her reign and glory was cut short by Rousey’s worst rival, Miesha Tate. “Cupcake”
was scheduled to face Rousey in a rematch at UFC 193, after winning four straight fights but the spot was given to Holly instead, this left the former Strikeforce women bantamweight champion bitter and angry. With Rousey saying she was taking time off, Tate was given her promised title bout in the form of a co-main event at UFC 196. After seeing what Holly did to Rousey at UFC 193 everyone was sure Miesha Tate could not win this match. But this time it was Holly who gave the upset as she was sent to sleep by Miesha Tate with a vicious rare naked choke. Dana White did not waste a second in announcing that Miesha’s next opponent would be Rousey. Holly gave her thoughts on rematch but the spot was given to Amanda Nunes, who has won 3 straight fights.
The next opponent that was targeted to fight “The Preacher’s Daughter” was “Cris Cyborg” but Holly turned down the fight. Now fans expected her to go one on one against either the monstrous Cat “Alpha” Zingano or the ultimate fighter season 18 winner Julianna Pena. But both were set against each other at UFC 200. With Sara McMann set against Jessica Eye, Bethe Correia booked for Raquel Pennington, and Rousey on a break, there is no match for Holly on one of the biggest UFC PPV, UFC 200.
For a moment, let’s take a look at the women bantamweight division. Julianna Pena, who has been on a winning streak, is going against Cat Zingano, ranked third in the division, this is like a woman bantamweight title eliminator as Cat holds victory over both Nunes as well as Tate hence she getting a shot makes sense. And if Julianna wins she gets a shot as she has been on a 3 straight wins. By the time this entire scene comes to an end the former champion Ronda “Rowdy” Rousey will return and demand her rematch at the title, whoever is the champion must defend it against “Rowdy”.
Hence Holly is not only out of the title picture but has no one to fight. Holly Holm has been reduced to a stepping stone for the lower rated fighters as a victory over her would mean an immediate title shot. A former multiple time world champion boxer Holly Holmes is one of the most talented and dominating fighters in all of UFC women division. UFC 200 is a great milestone and one of the most important UFC events of all times, fighters like Holly need to be on the card to make sure the event works.
At UFC 194 Conor McGregor created history by knocking out Jose Aldo in 13 seconds and winning the UFC Featherweight Championship. Thus making him a super celebrity, and pushing away Jose Aldo as if he were a sidekick. Conor McGregor was undefeated in UFC at that time and Aldo was at a winning streak in fact Aldo was undefeated for the past 10 years. People expected this to be one of the greatest Featherweight bout of all time and expressed their disappointment by saying that Conor was the greatest Featherweight of all time and Jose was a nobody. This was followed by series of nasty trolls.
Now, Jose had defended his title 7 times. If Ronda “Rowdy” Rousey deserved an immediate rematch, then Jose Aldo definitely deserved a rematch. But instead of a rematch McGregor goes on to challenge the UFC Light Weight Champion Rafael dos Anjos at UFC 196 in hope of becoming a dual champion. It is fair to say that this was unfair to Aldo not getting an immediate title rematch.
However, Rafael dos Ajnos withdrew from the fight just 11 days before UFC 196 and Dana White offers a rematch to Aldo expecting him to get ready for a rematch in 11 days, of course Aldo would decline. Now fate had something planned for Jose Aldo as at UFC 196 Conor McGregor would suffer his first UFC lost, tapping out to Nate Diaz in the 2nd round of the fight.
This meant that “The Notorious One” had to defend his title now, to prove it to everybody that he still was a good fighter. But UFC has always given money a priority over delivering good matches, hence the PPV became a rematch between McGregor and Diaz. This news did not stun anybody as, everybody thought McGregor deserved his rematch but people forgot that Jose was still in line. With celebrities like Justin Bieber jumping to support McGregor, cemented this rematch as it would generate a humongous sum of money.
Whereas Jose was reduced to interim title match. By fixing this match Dana White figuratively spat at Jose Aldo’s face. Aldo is one of the most talented featherweight fighter in all of MMA, but he is not as popular as Rousey or McGregor.
Does that mean these fighters do not deserve a shot at the title because they are not popular?
Does this mean that UFC has and will always give popular fighters a chance over deserving fighter?
By: Paarth Pande
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