Jose Aldo goes up against Conor McGregor in July. It’s the 10th defence of his UFC Featherweight Championship belt, a title he’s now held for over 1,500 days. Yet, why is he not considered a great champion? Why is the man fighting out of Rio de Janeiro never mentioned amongst the real elite?

Despite being the number two in UFC’s pound-for-pound rankings, he’s often overlooked by fans and the media as a real champ with the likes of Jon Jones, Anthony Pettis, and Robbie Lawler.

The man who has only lost one fight in 25 continually receives light applause when being paraded around the Octagon after yet another stunning victory, in fact, it’s almost become a custom. For a man who delivers Brazilian jiu-jitsu as an art form, it should be a custom for fans to be up in the air chanting his name.

Jose Aldo (Gleidson Venga/Sherdog)

Jose Aldo (Gleidson Venga/Sherdog)

Part of that reasons may be due to his lack of finishing in recent bouts, having only knocked out one of his last four opponents, although he did finish Chan Sung Jung off in truly phenomenal fashion.

He finished Chad Mendes in January 2012 in a similar brutish fashion, and flattened Cub Swanson back in the WEC in just 8 seconds with a double flying knee. So it’s in his locker. What’s more, at the time Swanson was a top challenger and Mendes is the number one ranking official UFC Featherweight.

Although when he walks out to the MGM Grand in July, chances are he’ll get the same sort of reaction.

In a city where you can gamble in every hotel both online and off picking up the likes of Canada Casino Rewards, you’d put your money on a rather feeble round of applause when he enters the Octagon.

A good performance, though, and that may change things. It’s clear to see he’s a solid performer — his numerous defences against top challengers prove that, and his versatility as a mixed martial arts fighter is second to none.

Excellent on the ground, kick boxing, and all around defence: he’s incredibly underrated. In fact, the 88.9% takedown defence – the 6th highest in UFC history – goes completely unnoticed.

But if there’s anywhere that can turn someone into a star, it’s Sin City. It made Elvis, Sinatra, Floyd Mayweather, and a whole host more. 2015 could be, and should be, the year Aldo’s name is up in lights for good.

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