UFC 259: Aljamain Sterling Suspended Until May After Disqualification Win Over Petr Yan

Published 03/09/2021, 10:06 PM EST
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – MARCH 06: Jan Blachowicz of Poland celebrates after his victory over Israel Adesanya of Nigeria in their UFC light heavyweight championship fight during the UFC 259 event at UFC APEX on March 06, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC)


UFC 259 took place this past weekend. Out of the three belts on the line, just one belt changed hands. Aljamain Sterling won the fight as Petr Yan was disqualified for an illegal knee to a downed opponent. This meant that the UFC handed the belt to ‘Funkmaster’ 

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While there has been a lot of controversy surrounding the fight and the stoppage, Dana White has stated that an immediate rematch is something that he and his team will work on immediately. However, the rematch will have to wait for a bit as medical suspensions mean that Sterling will have to sit out until May 6th and no contact till April 21st. 

Read: Claressa Shields explains why she is the ‘GWOAT’ and not Amanda Nunes 

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Medical suspensions following the UFC 259 title fights

Israel Adesanya who took a colossal risk and moved up to challenge for the light heavyweight belt came up short against Jan Blachowicz. Following his loss, the Nevada State Athletic Commission has handed him a lengthy suspension

Adesanya must have a left foot & ankle x-ray. If positive, he must have a doctor’s clearance or no contest until 09/03/21; minimum suspension: no contest until 04/21/21, no contact until 04/06/21. Blachowicz is suspended until April 6th. 

The likes of Amanda Nunes and Petr Yan have not received suspensions following their bouts against Anderson and Sterling, respectively. The Aussie has a no-contact until April 21, but could face a six-month spell on the sidelines. 

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – MARCH 06: (R-L) Amanda Nunes of Brazil. punches Megan Anderson of Australia. In their UFC featherweight 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 the fight card at UFC 259 was stacked with some incredible performances, the event was marred by what happened in the bantamweight title fight.

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Following the fight, the likes of former champions such as TJ Dillashaw and Henry Cejudo among others criticized Sterling for ‘acting’ and taking the easy way out. A lot of fans also believed that Sterling took the easy way out. 

Sterling has taken to social media to hit back at his critics. However, he will surely face a lot of criticism and will not be considered a legitimate champion unless he can win the rematch against Petr Yan when the UFC schedules it following his medical suspension. 

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How do you think a rematch between Yan and Sterling would play out? Do you think ‘Funkmaster’ can retain his title? Let us know in the comments below!

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Kevin Binoy

927 articles

Kevin Binoy is an MMA author at EssentiallySports. He earned a Bachelor's degree from Fergusson College and has been covering sports professionally for over two years. Besides working with the MMA writing team, Kevin is a core member of the organization's web stories team and is responsible for delivering engaging MMA web stories.

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