According to his manager, Andre Pederneiras, Jose Aldo is serious about leaving the UFC and he is willing to take them to court over it.
The interim featherweight champion initially threatened retirement after the announcement of Conor McGregor headlining UFC 205 against lightweight champion Eddie Alvarez.
Aldo was expecting a featherweight unification bout against McGregor, a fight more about avenging his 13-second KO loss than becoming the true champion again. Those dreams were all but shattered with McGregor moving up a weight class.
“He was already pissed off with the situation of being left aside without an answer,” said Pederneiras. “You can’t do that with someone like Aldo. You can do that to someone who just entered the UFC now, but not with a guy that went undefeated for 10 years, not with a guy that was the first and only champion until he lost the belt in a 13-second situation, and earned his rematch, was fooled and it didn’t happen. I think the company has its financial side – I have a company and will always think on the financial side – but I won’t lie to my employee. If there’s no way to do it, there’s no way to do it. I won’t tell everybody something, put in the news for everyone to see, and then be caught in a lie.”
Aldo now wants his release from the company.
“I think it creates dissatisfaction, and he will want to go to court. He would have to go to court to cut this contract. And the damage a dissatisfied person, someone like Aldo, talking sh*t to everyone about a lot of things, I think the company wouldn’t want a guy like this every day in the media talking trash. Since the guy doesn’t want to do it, let him leave! ‘I just want to leave, I don’t want to stay here anymore, I don’t want to fight here. I don’t want to be in anymore.’ We don’t want a war, we don’t want a fight, we don’t want to talk bad about anyone. We only want the right to say ‘I don’t want to be here anymore. It’s not about money, I don’t want to be here anymore,’ said Aldo.”
Unfortunately for Aldo, he’s in a bad negotiating position. Every title fight in the featherweight division that doesn’t feature Conor McGregor is a FS1 main event headliner, not a PPV blockbuster. It’s important for fighters, especially Aldo, to recognize that money runs the promotion.
And as long as Conor brings in the most cash, he is the the one will call the shots in the UFC.