One day after claiming a spy helped him craft the perfect strategy to beat Frankie Edgar at UFC 200, UFC interim featherweight champ Jose Aldo now insists that claim was simply a jab intended for Conor McGregor.
Aldo took to Instagram to insist he was joking at a Wednesday media session in Rio de Janeiro in which he claimed he “had some spies over on (Edgar’s) side, where he was training all week.”
“Sometimes we aren’t taken seriously, and other times we joke around and get taken too seriously, so… let’s clarify,” Aldo wrote. “I’ve always fought fair. I got to the top through a lot of hard work – both mine and my team’s. I am a principled person and fighter. My team is renowned for its development of tough, technical fighters but also for our collective character, and that’s what we’ll continue to be known for. I’d never do anything that goes against our principles.
“I fight clean, I fight fair, and I fight tough. When I talked about having spies in Edgar’s camp, it was a reference to a comment Macgregor [sic] made before our fight. It was just a jab. Everyone knows you can’t change up your entire strategy on fight week.”
Earlier this month, Aldo (26-2 MMA, 8-1 UFC) outfought a well-prepared Frankie Edgar (20-5-1 MMA, 14-5-1 UFC) for the better part of their five-round interim championship bout at UFC 200 and cruised to a decision win.
On Wednesday, Aldo claimed he used fight-week intelligence to help direct his strategy.
“Of course, there was (a spy),” Aldo said on Wednesday when pressed on his original comments. “Why wouldn’t I kick? That’s my own instinct! We always place a spy. We send someone to watch their training and tell us, so we know what they’re training.”
Today, Aldo claims it was all just a reference toward McGregor’s December 2015 appearance on “UFC Embedded” ahead of their UFC 194 clash, when the Irishman claimed he had his own spies inside the Brazilian’s team.
“Of course Frankie’s strategy was going to be everything that worked for him in our first fight – it was a no-brainer that he would try the same things,” Aldo wrote. “As to spies in camp, relax people … my spies are just in your heads. I’m ready for anyone, no spies required.”