Aljamain Sterling finds amusement in Sean O’Malley’s criticism as the bantamweights gear up for their clash in the main event of UFC 292 in August 2023.
Although Sterling had already assured that he would be prepared for the fight, O’Malley cast doubt on Sterling’s commitment. This doubt arose after Sterling openly acknowledged the quick turnaround from his five-round bout with Henry Cejudo in May. O’Malley criticized Sterling, suggesting, “You have four months [to get ready]… Take two months off, recover, and then train hard for two months. It’s not rocket science, or is it?”
In a video posted on Twitter, Sterling took on the role of Neil deGrasse Tyson, if only for a day, and debunked O’Malley’s claim by stating that it’s not science but rather mathematics. He added, “Mathematics. You may have forgotten because you either dropped out of high school or smoked away your brains, losing sight of the distinction between science and mathematics when dealing with numbers. You know, those big numbers I make when I cash out after kicking your ass.”
He emphasized that his presence on August 19 is not influenced by O’Malley or the fans but by the fact that Dana White is cutting the check for that date. Sterling dismissed the idea that neither of them has any authority and requested an end to the charade. He highlighted the duration between fights, stating that it would be 97 days, which he pointed out is three months, not four unless O’Malley’s understanding of math is unconventional. Sterling stated his intention to take time off and heal and underlined his discipline as a champion.
Sterling also responded to O’Malley’s remarks about UFC middleweight champion Israel Adesanya fighting four times in a year, suggesting that Sterling should be able to do the same. Sterling defended his title three times in the past 13 months, making him one of the most active champions alongside Adesanya and featherweight king Alexander Volkanovski.
Sterling then compared his record to O’Malley’s. He noted that O’Malley most recently competed in October in a three-round fight against former UFC champion Petr Yan. Before that, O’Malley faced Pedro Munhoz in July 2022, resulting in a no-contest due to an eye poke.
Mockingly, Sterling remarked on O’Malley’s achievements and mannerisms, expressing his desire to be like him. He sarcastically praised O’Malley’s frequent marijuana use, a distinctive way of speaking, and victories against top-ranked fighters still in the UFC. Sterling’s words conveyed a sense of irony and emphasized his skepticism toward O’Malley’s abilities.
Considering the ongoing exchange between the two fighters, it is highly likely that Sterling and O’Malley will continue to engage in verbal sparring until their scheduled meeting on August 19.
ABOUT ALJAMAIN “FUNKMASTER” STERLING
Aljamain Sterling is an American professional mixed martial artist who competes in the bantamweight division. He was born on July 31, 1989, in Uniondale, New York to Jamaican parents. Sterling began his MMA career in 2011 and quickly gained attention for his impressive grappling skills.
Sterling made his UFC debut in February 2014 and has since become one of the top-ranked bantamweight fighters in the promotion. He possesses a well-rounded skill set, known for his dynamic striking, intense wrestling, and exceptional submissions. Sterling holds victories over notable fighters such as Cody Stamann, Brett Johns, Pedro Munhoz, and Cory Sandhagen.
In addition to his skills inside the Octagon, Sterling is known for his charismatic personality and engaging presence during interviews and press conferences. He often expresses his thoughts on various topics related to MMA and is regarded as a thoughtful and articulate fighter.
On March 6, 2021, Aljamain Sterling competed for the UFC bantamweight championship against Petr Yan at UFC 259. During the fight, Sterling was hit with an illegal knee strike while grounded, resulting in Yan’s disqualification and Sterling being declared the new UFC bantamweight champion.
Sterling faced Henry Cejudo on May 6, 2023, at UFC 288. He won the fight by split decision and retained his title. 21 of 23 MMA media outlets scored the bout for Sterling, while 2 scored it for Cejudo.