Jose Aldo has a hurt rib, and while they didn't exactly cancel the fight, the bout is still questionable and the UFC has already tapped Chad Mendes as a potential replacement. Will he push through with the contest? By all accounts, it definitely seems like he will definitely try to make it to the cage.
UFC title challenger turned ESPN analyst, Chael Sonnen says the most lucrative payday of Aldo's career factors into everything.
"Aldo hurt his rib, that we know. Is he out? We can only speculate, but why not. Speculation is fun," Sonnen said on Facebook.
"Aldo is in on the PPV. He he gets a cut as long as he meets predetermined thresholds. The bad news for Aldo is that he has never met even the minimum threshold and thus has never gotten to participate in a back end bonus. This fight will generate a million buys which would convert to a bonus of roughly 3.5 million dollars. So.... Hurt or not, will he make the walk?"
While it is speculation, Sonnen does have a point. A badly bruised rib is no joke. It's bad enough to not be mobile enough to train and properly cut down to 145 lbs, let alone actually fight with it. With this being by far the biggest payday of Aldo's career, coupled by social media rumors on the UFC handing a lucrative offer stay on the card, will he still be willing to leave all that money on the table?
Of course, even if Aldo tries his best to push through, there's also the fact that the athletic commission could simply not allow him to compete if he doesn't pass the pre-fight medicals on fight week.
"When your injury reports surface on the web, it may not be an issue of Aldo being tough and gutting it out, it may be one an issue of the Commision stepping in and saying 'no go'," Sonnen wrote. "Whoever within his team leaked the training room information to the media, may have just cost Aldo 3.5 million dollars."
Sure, Aldo has a chance to earn big money if it gets rebooked a few months down the line, but not only does it lose a bit of luster, a potential Mendes win over McGregor pretty much erases all of that as well.