‘If You Were a Fan You’d Understand What I’ve Done’- Aljamain Sterling Hits Back at Haters at UFC 264

Published 07/10/2021, 11:08 PM EDT
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – JUNE 06: Aljamain Sterling prepares to fight Cory Sandhagen in their bantamweight bout during the UFC 250 event at UFC APEX on June 06, 2020 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC)


Reigning UFC bantamweight champion Aljamain Sterling became the first man to win UFC gold via disqualification. At UFC 259, the match was stopped after the former champion, Petr Yan, used an illegal knee when Sterling was down on the canvas in the fourth round.

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Immediately after the match, he opted to treat his injuries and went for neck surgery. However, he will return and look to shut his naysayers when he rematches Petr Yan at UFC 267.

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – MARCH 06: (R-L) Aljamain Sterling punches Petr Yan of Russia in their UFC bantamweight championship fight during the UFC 259 event at UFC APEX on March 06, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC)

Although he was awarded the win and the belt, many fight fans have continuously targeted him for the manner of the win. Some even claimed he was faking his injury.

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In the ongoing UFC 264 PPV, a reporter asked Sterling about his thoughts on getting hate from the fight fans. The ‘Funk Master’ gave a detailed explanation of the same.

“You know what man, you know the ones who dm me and said in comments and then go ‘I used to be a fan’, but bro, you were never a fan,” Sterling said.

“If you were a fan, you’d understand what I’ve done to get here. I have had so many setbacks and to get there from all the trials… that I have to go through from wrestling all the way through here.” 

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The ‘Funk Master’ added that he would still feel content even if he doesn’t fight tomorrow or has to stop today. He said that everything he would do from now onwards would be icing on the cake.

Aljamain Sterling targets Petr Yan

Sterling (20-3) didn’t stop there and urged his haters to target Yan instead for using the illegal knee.

“So, if you really wanna bash me because he did something illegal, blame him, but you wanna blame me. Because the rules that we all agree, the ref tells you in the backroom and then ref told on the floor,” he added.

The ‘Funk Master’, though, sent a simple message to his rival. “Listen, I can’t wait to shut him up and I know what I have done in this sport.”

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Well, Sterling has an opportunity now to silence his critics when he faces the Russian again later this year. Till then, he may have to swallow the criticism pill coming from his haters.

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What did you make of Sterling‘s message to his haters?

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Akshyay Srichandan Mahapatra

425 articles

Akshyay Mahapatra is a UFC author for EssentiallySports. He wished to combine his passion for the UFC (that he has been following since 2008) as well as his love for writing. This motivated him to enter the world of combat sports journalism.

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