Though Jose Aldo is coming off of a loss in his first fight at bantamweight, he will get a shot at 135-pound champion Henry Cejudo in the UFC 250 main event on May 9 in Brazil.
It’s a rare situation outside of an immediate rematch for a former champion that a fighter gets a UFC title shot coming off of a loss. We now have two such fights on the horizon. Yoel Romero is getting a shot at middleweight champion Israel Adesanya in the UFC 248 main event on March 7 in Las Vegas. UFC president Dana White on Monday confirmed to ESPN that Aldo, also coming off of a loss, would be Cejudo’s first challenger for the bantamweight belt.
Even more rare, Aldo and Romero have both lost their last two bouts, but are getting title shots.
In Romero’s case, top contender Paulo Costa was on the sidelines and Adesanya wanted to test himself against the likes of the Olympic Silver Medalist, so the UFC granted his wish.
It’s a similar situation with Aldo getting a crack at Cejudo. Both men wanted the fight despite Aldo’s current record. Aldo tried to regain contender status at featherweight last spring, but lost to Alexander Volkanovski. His 145-pound championship aspirations waning, Aldo decided to make the move to 135 pounds.
He lost a split decision to Marlon Moraes in his bantamweight debut at UFC 245, but of course there were differing opinions with many people feeling Aldo had won the bout, including White. With Cejudo wanting to fight the legendary Brazilian and the UFC needing a headliner for UFC 250 in Sao Paulo, they cast records aside and made the fight.
Despite Aldo’s pedigree at featherweight – in his first six and a half years under the Zuffa banner he was 15-0 – there are certainly numerous fighters that feel like he jumped the line at bantamweight. After all, his fight with Moraes is officially on his record as a loss.
He will however, step into the UFC 250 main event and challenge Cejudo when the Octagon door closes on May 9.
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The fight that no one asked for and that nobody wanted to see!#MakeRankingsGreatAgain
— Aljamain Sterling (@funkmasterMMA) February 24, 2020
This clown choosing Aldo because I don’t speak perfect English ??♂️ Since when Jose is the fluent speaker? What kind of logic is that? Henry knows he is not a draw and he is unsecured. In his head he already lost the fight to me. @ufc give me someone who is confident in himself! https://t.co/hAxpZKDICr
— Petr “No Mercy” Yan (@PetrYanUFC) February 18, 2020