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Jose Aldo willing to face anyone at UFC 217: 'It's a dream to fight' at MSG

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Jose Aldo
Jose Aldo
Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

RIO DE JANEIRO — The UFC has already officially announced two title bouts for the return of the promotion to Madison Square Garden, and a former champion wants to be part of the event.

Jose Aldo, who held the UFC and WEC featherweight titles for years, is still waiting for a confirmation of his next opponent, but hopes he gets booked to fight at UFC 217 in New York on Nov. 4.

“It's a dream to fight (in New York), especially at Madison Square Garden,” Aldo told the media Friday at his burger joint "Famous Burger" in Rio de Janeiro. “That's a dream I have. I grew up watching boxers fighting there, so fighting at this arena is historical for me. I want to be on this (card).”

UFC 217 will be headlined by Michael Bisping vs. Georges St-Pierre for the middleweight title, with Cody Garbrandt putting the bantamweight belt on the line against T.J. Dillashaw in the co-main event.

Aldo spent a few weeks in California, training boxing at Robert Garcia’s gym, and has no preferences when it comes to his next opponent in the Octagon.

“Man, I want to fight, no matter who the opponent is,” said the Brazilian, who fought for the last time in June, losing to Max Holloway. “The sooner, the better. I wanted to fight twice more (this year) but it won’t happen, so at least one before the end the of the year and again in January. That’s what I want."

Asked if he has a preference between rematches with Cub Swanson and Ricardo Lamas or a fight with Michael Johnson, who recently said he would go down to featherweight for a fight with Aldo, “Scarface" said he’s waiting for a final word from his manager Andre Pederneiras.

“Cub said his wife is expecting a baby, if I’m not mistaken, so he doesn’t want to fight for now, so we don’t know anything,” Aldo said. “‘Dede’ is talking to [UFC matchmaker] Sean (Shelby) and I’ll sit down with him, but, for now, I don’t have a name. I have to talk to ‘Dede’ first.

"(Pederneiras) said he has good things (to say), so I want to see what happens."