As his nickname suggests, Paul “Semtex” Daley knows a thing or two about brief but explosive fights, and the British MMA veteran is predicting that Jose Aldo vs Conor McGregor is going to be just that.
The former Cage Rage welterweight champion, who fought three times in the UFC from 2009-2010, has scored 19 first round stoppages in 37 career wins, and in 2011 was involved in one of the most famously dramatic firefights in MMA history, when he was stopped with just 3 seconds remaining in the opening stanza by Nick Diaz at a Strikeforce event.
In that contest Daley was taking a beating early on and looked in desperate trouble, but with a minute remaining in the round he dropped Diaz hard with a counter left-hook. The kickboxing specialist came within a hair of stopping the Stockton, California native with his follow-up barrage, but Diaz hung-on and after weathering the savage storm put Daley away with a varied salvo of strikes.
Writing about the UFC 194 main event between Aldo and McGregor in a recent column for WHOATV, Daley predicted that the featherweight title unification bout had “all the hallmarks of what should amount to an amazing stand-up war”. But a protracted conflict, he isn’t envisaging. This war will be succinct and definitive, according to Daley.
“I see an early stoppage from Aldo within two rounds”.
Daley’s reasons for arriving at such a conclusion are manifold. First, he feels that McGregor has had a rather easy path into the title picture, primarily fighting against opposition “suited to his style”. Aldo, said Daley, will provide the Irishman with his “first real test”.
From a technical standpoint, Daley see’s a number of flaws in McGregor’s stand-up game and believes that Aldo will be able to ruthlessly exploit these weaknesses.
“Aldo will simply be too much for him everywhere. In a stand up battle he’ll make light work of McGregor’s wide stance, his habitual dropping of his hands and flamboyant, but ineffective kicks”.
Given the aggressive stand-up styles of both combatants few people would dismiss the idea of a short but exciting slugfest. Many, however, will have a different winner in mind.
That’s what makes Jose Aldo vs Conor McGregor so intriguing.
Daley’s own career continues on January 16th when he faces Andy Uhrich at Bellator 148.