Jose Aldo and Conor McGregor to clash in UFC 189

March 24, 2015

In a highly anticipated matchup between two of the better fighters in the sport, reigning featherweight champion Jose Aldo will battle Irish superstar Conor McGregor on Saturday, July 11, in the five-round main event of UFC 189 at the MGM in Las Vegas.

Aldo (25-1), rated second in the sport's pound-for-pound rankings, will look to continue his historic reign and remain the only featherweight champion in UFC history. He will attempt an eighth straight successful title defense against polarizing Irish sensation McGregor (17-2), a winner of 13 straight.

“I was created in the street," said Aldo.  "I am a street fighter.  I will run him over.  I don’t care, there is no friendship.  Not with me.”

The two have had several heated exchanges through the press and social media, including one notable confrontation in which McGregor climbed out of the cage immediately after his victory in order to challenge the champion.  Aldo had been seated at ringside to watch the fight, and nonchalantly smiled at McGregor's display.

“I thought it was really funny," said Aldo, when asked about McGregor leaving the Octagon.  "He jumped and didn’t do anything, he just grabbed the security guy and stopped coming toward me.”

Meanwhile, the ever-talkative McGregor has continued his verbal jousting with Aldo, offering the following gems on this press tour:

  • “Honestly, it tickles me when the featherweights hit me. It doesn’t hurt me one bit. I don’t feel nothing.  I’m going to march him down and break him down.”
  • “As far as I am concerned, he is a coaster.  He has not finished anybody.  He only has one legit finish.  When I hit, they fall.  When he hits, they don’t.  He has 25 minutes to hide that chin from me."
  • “I have no problem having Aldo on this tour with me. I just pet him on his head and sit him on my lap.”
  • “Not only has (Aldo) already broken on this tour, he broke at home, in Rio de Janeiro. He broke nice and early.”

In addition, newly crowned welterweight champion Robbie Lawler (25-10, 1 NC) will make his first title defense against No. 2 Rory MacDonald  (18-2) in the co-main event.  The two title bouts will be the signature events of UFC’s International Fight Week, which kicks off July 7 in Las Vegas.

Lawler handed MacDonald his only loss in the last five years at UFC 167 in November 2013, and then went on to defeat top-ranked contenders Jake Ellenberger and Matt Brown before taking the 170-pound title from Johny Hendricks by decision.

MacDonald has rattled off three straight wins over Demian Maia, Tyron Woodley, and Tarec Saffiedine to secure his title shot and rematch with the champ.

By Staff of and news services

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