“I have a good game plan and I’m confident that I’m going to do it — I’m excited. I think Jose has all the pressure on his shoulders. He’s the one fighting in front of his home crowd. He’s the one who has the belt. I’m the underdog everyone is overlooking, and I’m confident that the things I’m good at are what’s needed to beat him. I’m feeling confident going into this fight… I don’t think Jose has any holes or cracks in his game. I feel the same way about my game. I don’t have any holes… Guys have to get their hands on him more. Honestly, I don’t think any of the guys who have fought him have had half the wrestling credentials — or the wrestling ability — to get him down and hold him down. I think my strengths are my keys to beating Jose… Beating the champion in his own backyard? To me there’s no better way to prove that I’m the best 145-pound fighter. This is the best shape I’ve ever been in and I’m excited to get this opportunity.”
— Chad Mendes on the UFC 142 conference call (via MMA Fighting) talking about his upcoming title fight against Jose Aldo at UFC 142
Jose Aldo is a tall order for anyone in the UFC’s featherweight division, especially in his home country of Brazil, but if any featherweight can beat Aldo, it’s Chad Mendes. This match-up reminds me a lot of Anderson Silva vs. Chael Sonnen. You don’t want to stand in front of Aldo all fight because he’s just going to pick you apart. You need to put him on his back and hold him there, and if anyone has the strength and wrestling ability to keep Aldo off his feet, it’s Mendes.
That doesn’t necessarily mean I’m picking Mendes, but stylistically, I think he has the best shot out of anyone in the featherweight division. Anyone think Mendes will win?
Image via Sherdog