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UFC's Bruce Buffer Explains José Aldo's Tough Fold at UFC 189
Whether you're a pro poker player or a UFC fighter, passing up a big opportunity can sometimes be the right move.
A few days ago featherweight champion José Aldo pulled out of next week's title fight because of a rib injury. It's akin to a high-stakes poker pro skipping a potentially juicy game because he knows he's on tilt.
UFC announcer Bruce Buffer has loved poker and fighting his entire life and he says that whether Aldo's decision was the right one or not, it definitely means he's walking away from a seven-figure payday next weekend at UFC 189.
“The decision to pull out of a tournament or a fight, in the case of Jose Aldo, it's a very tough decision because there's probably $3 million-plus dollars that he's not going to collect next weekend,” Buffer told PokerListings.com in Las Vegas.
The move also has implications for Connor McGregor who thought he was facing Aldo but will now be fighting Chad Mendes for the interim belt.
“Chad Mendes is actually, in my opinion, even a worse fight for Connor McGregor and his style of fighting.
“Connor was going up against a Muay Thai fighter in Aldo who he's been training for weeks or months. Now he's got two-and-a-half weeks to train for a grappler who can also knock you out in Chad Mendes.
“Mendes is one of the top five fighters of his time at featherweight right now so you still have a superbly high-quality championship fight."
Aldo Could Be Gambling on Next Fight
The UFC's decision to put Chad Mendes in against Connor McGregor next weekend for the interim belt has interesting ramifications for José Aldo's next match.
If McGregor wins, Aldo will get to fight him for the belt in a few months. It's a fight that will likely be even more lucrative than UFC 189 would have been next weekend because of the delay.
But if Mendes beats McGregor it means Aldo will be fighting Mendes for the belt, someone he's already defeated twice. It will probably result in a smaller payday for Aldo than he would have had at UFC 189.
Buffer said that much like poker pros and playing cards, fighters like Connor McGregor really just want to fight.
“I was with Connor the other day because I had him on my podcast It's Time and his whole thing is that he just wants to fight. He'll fight anyone you put in front of him.
“He's a true warrior and so is Chad. I mean, two and a half weeks out to take a fight like this? Kudos to Chad.”
Watch the Full Video Interview with Bruce Buffer
Check out the full video interview with UFC Announcer Bruce Buffer from the World Series of Poker in Las Vegas.