It’s amazing how far a simple text message will sometimes get you. In the case of a Anthony “Showtime” Pettis, it catapulted him straight into title contention. The last WEC lightweight champion, and the owner of the most famous kick in MMA history, finally got his shot at UFC gold, but to everyone's surprise, at featherweight against reigning champion, Jose Aldo.
UFC head honcho, Dana White, announced that Pettis was interested in dropping down to 145 to face Aldo minutes after UFC 156 ended. Pettis, who lost his UFC debut to Clay Guida, visited Puerto Rico last week for some down time before training camp for Aldo starts.
“Showtime” was welcomed at the Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport by his fans who also joined the fighter and his family for lunch at La Casita Blanca, one of San Juan’s most colorful and authentic restaurants. “What draws me to 145 is Jose Aldo,” said Pettis after a hefty lunch with friends, fans, and family. He also explains how the interaction with Dana White really was and refers to that text he sent the night of UFC 156 as the best text he ever sent.
Half Puerto Rican, half Mexican by blood, Pettis also describes how growing up was witnessing a family divided by combat sports, especially boxing. Puerto Rican on his father’s side, Mexican on his mother’s side, Pettis talked about watching the whole family come together to watch Tito Trinidad face Oscar de la Hoya, how the family was divided between the two fighters, and how the people’s reaction on the street after Trinidad’s win inspired him to be a fighter.
Pettis seemed completely committed to help forward MMA and the support for UFC in Latin America, especially Puerto Rico, where he would like to headline an event, be it Jose Aldo, or his WEC nemesis, the UFC 155 kingpin, Ben Henderson.
Who do you have winning between Aldo and Pettis? Should Pettis remain at 145 or jump back to 155 and pursue the long awaited rematch between him and Ben Henderson?
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