UFC color commentator Joe Rogan has issued an apology after audio leaked of him questioning Jose Aldo’s physique in the minutes before his fight with Conor McGregor in the main event of UFC 194 on Saturday night.
The audio, which mysteriously appeared the day after the fight, recorded Rogan voicing his opinion to a producer off-air during the fight announcements that Aldo looked “way different”, claiming that his body looked “soft” and “deflated.”
The UFC recently severely ramped up it’s drug testing policy and it’s lead to a lot of speculation as to which fighters may or may not have now come off performance enhancing drugs in order to avoid the strict punishments that are now in place.
Rogan’s comments appeared to suggest that he thought Aldo may have come off PED’s, though to be fair the audio does also record him adding the caveat that, “it could be that he’s done a lot of cardio. Don’t want to jump to conclusions.”
However, in an episode of his JRE podcast earlier this week with his close friend, former UFC heavyweight Brendan Schaub, Rogan spoke again about Aldo, this time bringing up the fact that prior to his cancelled fight with Conor McGregor at UFC 189 earlier in the year, there had been some controversy over a random drug test he’d been given.
“They tried to test Aldo in camp, and Aldo’s people had the cops pulled on these people, they wanted to get them kicked out of the country,” Rogan recalled. “They were trying to deport them out of the country. Then when they finally did give them a urine sample, he tripped and spilled his piss. That’s insane. I never tripped and spilled piss in my entire career, and I pissed in cups all the time.”
Then Schaub went all in, making it perfectly clear he thinks that Aldo and a number of others in his camp have had to cycle off PED’s in recent months.
“You’re batsh*t crazy if you don’t think Jose Aldo’s body looked different,” Schaub told Rogan. “You’re batsh*t crazy if you think he’s gonna fight the same. … His camp, I think, is 1-7, 0-8 since this drug testing came out. So you’re talking about a different fighter man.”
Aldo’s camp has angrily responded to these accusations, with his coach and owner of the Nova Uniao gym Andre Pederneiras putting them on blast via a Twitter post.
“To the clown that thinks Aldo was on something and isn’t anymore, draw your own conclusions,” Pederneiras wrote alongside four photographs of the former featherweight champion from his four most recent fights in which he appears to have a very similar physique.
Para o palhaço que acha que o Aldo tomava alguma coisa e deixou de tomar, tire suas conclusões , 4 últimas lutas ! pic.twitter.com/usC8X6GMR8
— André Pederneiras (@dedepederneiras) December 16, 2015
Rogan has since responded via Instagram, saying that he stands corrected while apologizing directly to Jose Aldo and Andre Pederneiras.
There was an audio “leak” from inside the UFC production truck right before Saturday night’s fight where I said that Jose Aldo’s body looked smooth and deflated, and that I didn’t want to jump to any conclusions and that it could have just been from doing a lot of cardio. I also said he looked nervous. Needless to say this caused a lot of controversy.
Since then people have posted photos of Aldo recently as well as from this fight, and he looked very similar.
So for that, I stand corrected. My apologies for being wrong to Aldo and his trainer Andre Pederneiras. I have nothing but admiration and respect for both of them.
This wasn’t supposed to be a public conversation, I was just talking to my friend the producer in the truck privately.
As you can see from this photo from earlier in his career his body looked different from how he looked Saturday night. There are several possible reasons for that, one of them being that the 1st photo is him moving, and another that he had endurance problems in the later rounds of his fights and might have leaned out.
Another thing some were upset with was that I didn’t want an immediate rematch, and that I thought Conor should fight Frankie Edgar. My reasons for this are that I think Frankie stylistically is a great match up for Conor. I also think that when someone suffers a brutal knockout they should take a lot of time off to recover. I’m not a promoter, and I don’t get to decide who fights who or when, and for that I’m grateful. What I am though, is someone who respects and cares very deeply for fighters and their health. Too many times I’ve seen fighters come back too soon from being KO’ed and watch them not be able to absorb punishment anymore.
Aldo is on my short list of all time favorite fighters, along with Wanderlei Silva, Anderson Silva, GSP, Mighty Mouse, and Fedor.
I would love to see Aldo back motivated for revenge and gunning to regain his title. First though, I’d like to see him rest and recover.
Again, my apologies to Jose Aldo and Andre Pederneiras and anyone else I offended with my opinions.
Rogan has been the UFC’s color commentator for many years, but recently told UFC flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson on his podcast prior to this latest controversy that he might not renew his contract when it ends in the summer of 2016.