Jose Aldo was effectively able to deal with Frankie Edgar’s constant forward pressure tonight at UFC 200 to emerge with a unanimous decision victory and claim the interim featherweight title.
The interim featherweight title fight is underway! Both men size each other up from range to start. Leg kick for Edgar. He flashes out the one-two.
Punches followed up by a kick for Edgar. Leg kick for Edgar. He pumps out the jab. Edgar upstairs with a head kick, but Aldo avoids it.
Jab for Edgar. He’s settled quicker than Aldo, who’s feeling out with his jab at times, be hasn’t landed yet. Right hand for Aldo, but Edgar returns fire with a combo.
Nice left and a right for Aldo. Both men land in close. And again. Aldo comes up short with the right. He looks for a combo, but Edgar tries for a takedown that’s stuffed.
Punches and a kick for Edgar. Quick hands for ‘The Answer’. He clips Aldo with a right hook, but it’s a glancing blow.
Work rate is much higher from Edgar at this stage, and he can continue this for the full five rounds. Spinning kick for Aldo to the leg.
Good right hand for Aldo, that’s his best punch so far. Body punch and then one upstairs for Edgar. Hard knee to the body from Aldo.
Aldo leaps into a knee to the head and then a hard punch that knocks Edgar off-balance to the mat. Aldo going on the offense in the final stages of the round.
Edgar tries to go upstairs with a head kick, but comes up short. Three-piece combo and a leg kick for Edgar. Another leg kick. Feels out with the front kick. Head kick too, but both miss.
Leg kick for Edgar. Jabs for Aldo, but eats one in return from Edgar. Aldo flashes the left hook out as Edgar comes in. Aldo with a nice knee strike to the body.
A left hand apiece. Leg kick for Edgar. Aldo makes him miss a punch. A little blood trickling from Edgar’s right eye. Aldo blocks a head kick.
Edgar surges forward and lands a punch. He goes into a takedown, but Aldo steps aside. Edgar with a single leg attempt, but again Aldo shakes it off easily.
Right hand gets through for the former lightweight champ. Jab connects for him. Left and then a solid right lands for Aldo. Edgar responds with a combo of his own.
Flurry of hands to set up a kick from Edgar, though Aldo counters with a punch. Nice jab for Aldo on the back foot.
Aldo pinpoint accurate with a couple of jabs there as Edgar buzzed around him. Knee strike for Aldo and Edgar tries to catch that and transition into a takedown, but Aldo’s takedown defense has been terrific so far tonight. Edgar tries to come on strong to end the round, but Aldo largely avoids him.
Clean right hand for Edgar. Now a leg kick. He fakes a takedown attempt. Misses with an uppercut, but lands the leg kick. Aldo countering with a right and a left.
Edgar with the takedown and again shrugged off. Edgar presses him against the cage, but eats a knee to the face in the process. Edgar with a few knees to the leg. 5 or 6 have landed now.
Aldo breaks away. Edgar has some blood trickling from his nose as well as his right eye. Nice exchange in close and Edgar lands with the right.
Another right scores for Edgar. Aldo looking to counter a lot, but would do well to go on the attack more at times. Big right from Aldo. Nice punch from Edgar soon after.
Aldo lands a knee to the body and Edgar works for tha takedown, but has to settle for the clinch. Aldo moves away and pumps out the jab.
Jab for Aldo and a right for Edgar. Solid jab for Aldo there as Edgar came in. Edgar circling. jab from Aldo and another good knee strike. Solid leg kick for Aldo.
Double-jab for Edgar. Now a leg kick. Misses the front kick to the body. Again with the double-jab. Edgar with a high body kick.
Right and a left for ‘The Answer’. Aldo often just out of reach for Edgar’s punches. left hand a leg kick for him.
Right hook for Aldo. He looks to counter with that punch again as Edgar comes in. Nice right hand for Edgar. He lands a left hook too that finds the mark.
Edgar with a head kick, but it’s blocked. Right hand for Aldo, then another. He lands a three-piece combo. Very hard left and a right for Aldo now. When he connects it’s significantly harder than Edgar’s strikes, but he doesn’t have the same volume.
Edgar with a punch, but Aldo lands a right and a left too. Great head movement from Aldo to make Edgar miss. He’s countering nicely at times and avoiding Edgar’s busywork, but it’ll be interesting to see how the judges are scoring these exchanges.
Edgar short with a right hand. He tries a kick, but Aldo counters with a punch that knocks him off-balance. Edgar gets the right hand through and that’s the end of the round.
Hard leg kick for Aldo, which is what his coach was calling for. Edgar misses with the head kick. Flurry from Edgar, but Aldo is moving out of range.
Good left hook from Aldo. Leg kick for Edgar. Aldo doing admirably off his back foot at time. Kick upstairs for the former champion.
Left hand gets through for both Aldo and Edgar. Relentless pressure from Edgar, but not always finding a home for his strikes. Both men connect with a punch at roughly the same time.
Hard right hand straight down the pipe from Aldo. Edgar charges forward with a flurry, but doesn’t land. Nice elbow from Aldo as Edgar comes in.
Left and a right glance Aldo’s face. Right hand for ‘The Answer’. Edgar upstairs with a head kick that’s blocked. Solid left and right from Aldo.
Aldo picks out a couple of jabs to stop Edgar’s forward momentum. Edgar trying to flurry in the final minute. Right hand for Edgar. Spinning kick misses for Edgar.
Edgar frustrated as Aldo constantly moves out of reach. Aldo with a flying knee to the body as the fight comes to an end.
So, it’s off to the judges we go to decide who wins this one, and they are unanimous in their verdict that Jose Aldo is the winner (49-46 x2, 48-47), making him the new interim featherweight champion.
So, a very good performance from Aldo against a very tricky opponent. He picked his shots carefully and made them count, while managing to make Edgar miss many of his, and completely shut down his takedown attempts.
As such he makes a strong case to get a second crack at Conor McGregor, though if the Irish star doesn’t drop back down again soon then a fight with Max Holloway would also be a great match-up in the mean time.