‘Just Give My Body Some Time to Heal’- Aljamain Sterling Opens Up on Potential Title Rematch With Petr Yan

Published 03/10/2021, 5:27 AM EST
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – MARCH 05: (L-R) Opponents Petr Yan of Russia and Aljamain Sterling face off during the UFC 259 weigh-in at UFC APEX on March 05, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC)


Aljamain Sterling won the bantamweight championship at UFC 259 after his opponent Petr Yan was disqualified for landing an illegal knee. Though the Russian lost the fight, he feels he didn’t lose his belt.

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Sterling has received some criticism on social media from the fans, as many believe ‘Funkmaster’ milked the injury. In his defense, he would have been severely compromised had he decided to continue as the shot from Yan was brutal. However, the new champion has already started light training and is looking forward to a potential rematch.

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I think just give my body some time to heal my brain so that I don’t go in still having slight residual side effects from this fight going into the next one and then I get punched and then I got my eyes rolling in the back of my head and not being able to endure the shots that I was able to endure in that fourth round,” Sterling said to The Schmo.

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)

Sterling also added that he wants to give himself enough time to recover from the damage. He took some big shots from Yan in the fourth round, but could endure them due to his superior conditioning. However, if he rushes back to the Octagon, that might cause his downfall.

When should Petr Yan and Aljamain Sterling fight again?

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Following the events of UFC 259, it is evident that the UFC and both fighters are heading in the way of a possible rematch as soon as possible. However, as Sterling needs to recover and begin training properly once more, it is likely the duo will clash again sometime in the summer. Although nothing has been hinted yet about the possible timeline.

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – MARCH 06: (L-R) Petr Yan of Russia punches Aljamain Sterling 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)

The decision from Yan to land the illegal shot was quite inexplicable too. He was gaining control of the fight as Sterling was fading. A rematch has to happen to decide the better fighter and erase the fiasco that was their first fight at UFC 259.

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What did you make of Aljamain Sterling’s comments about a potential rematch? Let us know.

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Apratim Banerjee

838 articles

Apratim Banerjee is an MMA author for EssentiallySports and has been writing professionally for almost a year. Before his current gig, Apratim worked as a UFC writer for Sportskeeda. A long-time MMA fan, Apratim has developed a critical eye for the sport that has helped him transfer his vast knowledge to his copies and give hardcore and casual readers a detailed insight into the fights and fighters.

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