(“Okay, forget the shoving thing, I’ve got a better way to promote us. Have you ever seen the music videos of this man Weird Al?” / Photo by Leandro Lima)
In a regrettable instance of an MMA fighter breaking kayfabe, UFC featherweight champ Jose Aldo went on record yesterday saying that his unsolicited shove of Chad Mendes earlier this week was only done to hype their fight. I know, I know…ShockedJohnCena.gif.
Here’s what Aldo said to local media (via MMAFighting), following a faceoff with Mendes in Sao Paulo on Wednesday that did not result in shoving:
“We were talking to Andre (Pederneiras) in a meeting about how we could improve our fight promotions. It’s part of the show. But I told Andre after (the staredown) that it’s not my style,” Aldo said. “It was not staged, we were talking (trash) to each other and it happened. … We (Aldo and Pederneiras) tried to spice things up, but that’s it…
“I’ve never pushed anyone during a staredown before,” he said. “I should behave better. I’m not saying I regret it. We did it, it was good. There was a good thing about it that people are now talking about it, but it’s not who I am. It won’t happen again.”
Oh, people are talking about it, all right. Mainly, they’re talking about how clearly pre-meditated the shove was — and how rivalries only generate fan-interest if they appear genuine. But obvious fakery aside, it’s still a poor promotional strategy for Aldo to tell everybody that his shove was all part of the show, before the show even happened. Because whatever small amount of heat that Aldo created when he put his hands on Chad Mendes has now been exterminated like the proverbial hemorrhoid pad on a matchstick.
Bottom line: If you’re going to pretend to hate your opponent, at least commit to the role for more than a day. Otherwise, you have nothing to look forward to but more disappointing buyrates.