Before Jose Aldo shoved Chad Mendes in their staredown to promote UFC 179, Dede Pederneiras kind of knew what was coming.
In an interview published by Combate.com on Monday, Aldo's coach and Nova Uniao leader said that he was going to have a conversation with his athletes to explain the importance of promotion in the fight business, even if he was essentially against trash talk and physical confrontation before the fight day.
"People have to understand that there are two side now in the MMA of today, mostly in the UFC: the sporty side and the business side. I've always learned and passed to all my athletes that you have to respect your opponent, even if you have beat the hell out of him. You always have to be polite and treat him in the best way. But this model is not attractive for the business side. You see people having title shots by talking a lot. I can say that it's wrong? I can't. By the business side, it's absolutely right. By the sporty side, it's wrong. As as coach and professor, I don't want to see my fighter doing trash talking and have altercations with other guys. I want him to be a UFC champion, but also be a good person, to be polite and learn things for the rest of his life. However, we'll have a meeting here to talk about the business side. We are in a dilemma. You have to enter in a fight thinking about the show or other guys will pass you."
According to Dede, this kind of conversation about commercial issues isn't new in Nova Uniao.
"About 10 or 12 years ago, I had a talk with my athletes. We were a Jiu-Jitsu gym and were going to become a MMA team. I told them this: 'If you just took your opponents down and don't do stand up fighting, no organization will want to have you. Nobody wants to watch a guy that just does grappling, sometimes having a submission and sometimes not. In this market, the American market, people want to watch striking. You can takedown your opponent but also trade punches with him.' We have invested in training to avoid being taking down and to strike for a long time. This meeting that I will have with them is to say that the market doesn't want you to just trade punches with your opponent, but also that you talk a lot of shit about your rival to to get everybody's attention. We didn't want this, but it sells good and financially will be nice for the fighters."
Coincidence or not, Aldo shoved Mendes the day after this interview was published. Both men were locked in war of words ever since their rematch was booked at UFC 176, on August 3 The heat grew when the UFC featherweight champion hurt himself and the bout was rescheduled from the card to be placed on one in Rio de Janeiro on October 25.