Chad Mendes (Esther Lin/MMA Fighting)UFC 179: Chad Mendes’ Blueprint for a Title Victory RJ Gardner October 22, 2014 Events, Previews, Spotlight Can you feel the excitement in the air? UFC 179 is just a few days away and the main event between UFC featherweight champion Jose Aldo and Chad Mendes is all I have been able to think about for days now. On one side of the cage you have Aldo, who is arguably the best pound-for-pound fighter in the world and he is the only featherweight champion in UFC history. On the other side of the cage you have Mendes, a talented fighter who came up short in his first shot at the title against Aldo over two years ago and has since morphed into a featherweight wrecking machine; racking up five straight victories with four knockouts. Aldo and Mendes are both in the prime of their careers and they are both performing at a high level inside of the Octagon. And to make this fight even more appealing, Aldo and Mendes do not like one another one bit and the rivalry between their camps Nova Uniao and Team Alpha Males has gone to a new level since Mendes’ teammate T.J. Dillashaw took the bantamweight title for Aldo’s teammate Renan Barao. Even though Aldo has been a dominant force in the sport for years, no one is unbeatable; even the greatest warriors have chinks in their armor. If anyone is going to beat Aldo in the near future it’s going to be Mendes. Mendes has the power, speed and athleticism to match up with Aldo and he also has an elite wrestling base to fall back on if need be. But just because Mendes has to the tools to pull off the upset doesn’t mean he will and that’s where “The Bang Effect” comes in. Even though Duane “Bang” Ludwig is no longer the head coach for Team Alpha Male, he is still very involved in many of the fight camps for Team Alpha Male fighters; Mendes being one of those fighters. Ludwig has taken many Team Alpha Male fighters to new heights and his influence can easily be seen in Mendes. Prior to Ludwig, Mendes won 11 fights with four finishes, since he started working with Ludwig Mendes has won five fights with four finishes. That means his finishing rate has gone from 36% to 80%, a huge jump. Add that to Mendes’ already impressive skill set and athleticism and you have a dangerous fighter. “The Bang Effect” doesn’t stop there, though, as Ludwig has proven that he is a great game planner and he knows how to coach a fighter to beat a pound-for-pound elite. If Mendes is going to win this fight he is going to have to fight the fight that Ludwig tells him to fight — its just that simple.