Despite his UFC 273 post-fight call out, Aljamain Sterling doesn’t believe TJ Dillashaw deserves the next Bantamweight title shot.
At UFC 273, Sterling silenced his doubters after winning a split decision over Petr Yan to retain his bantamweight title. In his post-fight interview with Joe Rogan, he called for a bout against two-time bantamweight Champion T.J. Dillashaw. But it seems “The Funk Master” has changed his mind about who he wants to face next.
“When I thought about it afterward, I was like, he doesn’t really deserve it. He really didn’t earn it. Maybe it’s just because I heard the narrative so much that he was gonna be getting the winner of myself and Yan when we were supposed to fight in Abu Dhabi…So maybe I just got wrapped up in that.” (via the MMA hour)
He then went on to rattle off some names he believes are more deserving than Dillashaw, such as Jose Aldo and Dominick Cruz.
Aljamain Sterling Wants Petr Yan or TJ Dillashaw
Dillashaw relinquished his title after testing positive for EPO in 2019. After serving a two-year suspension, he returned to the octagon in July 2021 at UFC Vegas 32 in the main event against Cory Sandhagen. He was able to gut out a controversial split decision which looked to set him up for a title match next.
Even though Aljamain Sterling doesn’t think that Dillashaw deserves the next title shot, he isn’t completely opposed to the fight.
“I knew he was there, I know that’s what the UFC wants to do, so that’s probably why I even said his name. But it’s a fun fight. The fans know him, he’s got a big resume, and to beat a guy like that only adds to my resume and my legacy. I’m here for the money.”
One man who will have something to say, however, is Petr Yan. Yan argued that he had done enough to win the fight despite the judge’s decision. UFC President Dana White agreed with Yan in the post-fight press conference.
“I thought the judges blew that one. I had it 3-2 the other way. I don’t know how you guys scored it. I guess it’s all in how you scored that first round,” White said. (via mmafighting.com).
Aljamain Sterling has been adamantly clear about how happy he is to finally be able to move on from Yan, but the Bantamweight Champion did say he’d be happy to face his rival for the third time in the future.
“If he wants to be 0-3 against ‘The Funk,’ we can make it happen. If you look at his record, two of those losses are from me, so if he wants a third, we can do it again.”
Who do you think should challenge Aljamain Sterling for the Bantamweight title next?