One of UFC Calgary’s most anticipated match-ups was the co-main event fight between Jose Aldo and Jeremy Stephens — and it didn’t disappoint, with Aldo finishing the fight with a giant body shot.
Jose Aldo was formerly the king of featherweight. ‘Scarface’ was the first and by far most dominant champion the UFC had ever seen at 145lbs. However following two losses to Max Holloway, Aldo has openly admitted that his time in the UFC is coming to a close. Still, he had business at UFC Calgary in the form of Jeremy Stephens. ‘Lil Heathen’ was on the opposite track going into this fight: he was on the best streak of his career. That streak included brutalizing Josh Emmett and Doo Ho Choi this year in main event slots. A win over Aldo could potentially get Stephens a title fight, so a lot was on the line for him in Canada.
The fight opened with both men trading giant shots, Stephens in particular swinging for the fences. He managed to get Jose Aldo to trade with him, which you’d have to think would play into the American’s hands. Early on, Aldo was noticeably flat-footed, showing far less movement than you might expect against a powerhouse like Stephens. However, while Stephens managed to draw Aldo into a firefight, that would prove to be a mistake, as Jose Aldo landed one of the most brutal body shots imaginable. Jeremy Stephens went down and Aldo pounced! Stephens held out as long as he could, impressively so. Try as he might, he could not escape or even fend off the barrage of punches raining down upon him. It was the ground and pound from Aldo that had the ref call the fight, but it was the body kick that set up the end. Jose Aldo was back ladies and gentlemen.
Jose Aldo may be near the end of his career, but that doesn’t mean he’s still not incredibly dangerous. Tonight showed that. Taking some giant shots from Jeremy Stephens and coming forward and getting the stoppage on a fighter known for how durable he is, is a giant accomplishment. Now, where does Aldo go from here, given he’s lost twice to the champ?
Jose Aldo def Jeremy Stephens by TKO, Round 1, 4:19