Jose Aldo faced off against one of the most exciting fighters in MMA in Chan-Sung Jung at UFC 163. On paper, this had the makings to be a war, and it actually turned out to be an exciting title fight. Uncharacteristically, Aldo did not engage in his usual brutalizing leg kicks (the reason being a broken foot, as he told the media later on), using his boxing advantage to hold off the Korean Zombie.
Jung hung in there, but it was clear Aldo had the wrestling advantage as well, as he forced Jung against the cage on several occasions. However, in the third, Jung began to pick up his offense, landing a good flurry of punches. It seemed like Jung was finally finding his rhythm, and Aldo has had conditioning problems in the past, so it looked like a great strategy.
Unfortunately, Jung dislocated his right shoulder while throwing a punch in the fourth, and Aldo was able to capitalize, getting him down to the ground and finishing the fight with a TKO to retain his title. Aldo remains undefeated in his Zuffa career, bringing his record to an impressive 23-1. This was his seventh successful title defense, and the move up to the lightweight division seems to be in his best interests at this point.
Despite there being some great contenders in the featherweight division such as Chad Mendes, Ricardo Lamas and Cub Swanson, there are bigger fights to be made in the lightweight division.
Ben Henderson is about to defend his belt against the dynamic striker Anthony Pettis, and it would behoove Aldo to fight the winner. Few of the so-called super-fights have actually come to fruition, and a move up in weight would provide fresh challengers for Aldo, who is one of the best pound-for-pound fighters on the planet.
Aldo has shown he can hold his own against bigger fighters, and his dominance at featherweight has made the potential move up to lightweight all the more intriguing. Also, Aldo has always been a big featherweight, so the move to lightweight could possible improve his cardio.
Wherever he goes from here, Aldo has shown improvement in his wrestling, which is a scary thing for any fighter looking to take his belt.