Former two-division UFC titleholder Henry Cejudo didn’t hold back against bantamweight champion Aljamain Sterling.
After a three-year layoff, Cejudo will return to face Sterling for the bantamweight title in the main event of UFC 288 on May 6.
During a recent interview with ESPN, Cejudo (16-2) had a heated exchange with Sterling, who he criticized for his controversial title win at UFC 259.
In March 2021, Sterling (22-3) defeated former champion Petr Yan by disqualification due to an illegal knee. A year later, he captured another win against Yan by split decision.
“He won the [title] via Academy Award. He won the second fight against Yan [against Yan] via… judges guilt,” Cejudo said. “This dude is an easy fight for me and I’m going to stop him no less than three rounds and I promise you that.”
Henry Cejudo vs. Aljamain Sterling Are Two Bantamweight Greats
Cejudo, who is a former simultaneous bantamweight and flyweight champion, last fought in May 2020 at UFC 249 where he defeated Dominick Cruz by TKO. He announced his retirement after the bout.
The 36-year-old re-entered the USADA drug-testing pool in early 2022. His UFC resume includes other wins over Demetrious Johnson, T.J. Dillashaw, Sergio Pettis and Marlon Moreas, to name a select few.
Sterling, who represents the Serra-Longo Fight Team, hasn’t lost in five years. Since winning the 135-pound title, he has defended his throne twice with wins over former champions Yan and Dillashaw.
The Long Island, New York native is ranked No. 7 in the UFC’s pound-for-pound fighter list.
“Once that bell rings and you realize it’s not an easy fight, you’re going to feel so stupid,” Sterling told Cejudo.
The two 135-ers will settle their beef at UFC 288 that will be held at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey.