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Jose Aldo: Merab Dvalishvili ‘won’t even come close’ to taking me down at UFC 278

Former featherweight champion Jose Aldo is set to take on Merab Dvalishvili on August 20.

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Former UFC featherweight champion Jose Aldo is confident ahead of his outing on next Saturday. Paired up against rising prospect Merab Dvalishvili, the Brazilian understands how dangerous his opponent’s wrestling skills are, but does not feel too concerned about it.

In an interview with Ag Fight, Aldo explained why he feels so relaxed ahead of the fight and not too worried about Merab’s takedowns. The way Jose puts it, Dvaslishvili will just not find an opportunity to take him down in the Octagon.

“I can’t see how (he can take and keep me down),” Aldo said. “I train with much more accomplished wrestlers, so you better believe it he won’t even come close to taking me down. When you’re in there against the champion, you’ll see you’re not able to do the things you thought you could do when you were at home. I’m at ease about that.

“People say I train too much and I always tell them I don’t,” Aldo said. “This a skill of mine. It’s much more of that than actual wrestling practice. It has never been a priority of mine during the camp. I drill whatever works for me. I have a good double and single leg, plus my defense. He’s going to look for a grappling match and we’ll keep him away.”

Currently on a three-fight winning streak, with wins over Rob Font, Pedro Munhoz and Marlon Vera, Aldo (31-7) could secure a title shot with a win over Dvalishvili on Saturday. The 35-year-old’s last loss took place in July 2020, when he got TKO’d by former champion Petr Yan.

Now, Aldo is expected to meet Dvaishivili at UFC 278, on August 20, in Salt Lake City, Utah. The card is scheduled to be headlined by a rematch for the welterweight title between the champion, Kamaru Usman, and challenger Leon Edwards. In their first encounter, the ‘Nigerian Nightmare’ defeated ‘Rocky’ via unanimous decision, back in December 2015.