Read about Aljamain Sterling’s defeat and display of sportsmanship at UFC 292. Discover how Sean O’Malley ended Sterling’s title reign and winning streak.
No longer the championship belt holder in the UFC bantamweight division, Aljamain Sterling showed the character of a champion in life beyond mixed martial arts competition in the moments after his loss.
Sterling, who had previously held the title, faced Sean O’Malley at UFC 292 in Boston on Saturday. Despite the defeat, Sterling displayed remarkable sportsmanship, congratulating O’Malley and his team.
In a fight that lasted 51 seconds into the second round, O’Malley secured victory by landing a clean right hand that dropped Sterling. O’Malley’s win ended Sterling’s run of three straight bantamweight title defenses and nine consecutive wins, both of which were UFC records in the 135-pound division.
Sterling, however, remained positive and resilient in defeat. He acknowledged that he had been knocked out before but had managed to pick himself up and become the UFC champion. He expressed his determination to return to the octagon and once again compete for the belt.
The matchup between Sterling and O’Malley was anticipated as a clash between a grappler and a striker. While there wasn’t much grappling in the fight, O’Malley successfully defended Sterling’s takedown attempts. O’Malley revealed that he had refrained from grappling for six weeks to allow a muscle strain in his core to heal.
Despite his nerves leading up to the fight, O’Malley praised Sterling as the best bantamweight of all time. He credited his confidence in his right hand as the key to his victory.
The first round served as a feeling-out process for both fighters, with Sterling landing more strikes than O’Malley. However, O’Malley’s counter-punch in the second round proved to be the decisive blow.
O’Malley declared that this win marked the beginning of the ‘Suga’ era, hinting at his future dominance in the division.
- Aljamain Sterling showed sportsmanship after his defeat
- Sean O’Malley ended Sterling’s title reign and winning streak
- O’Malley defended Sterling’s takedown attempts
- O’Malley praised Sterling as the best bantamweight of all time
- O’Malley’s right hand proved to be the decisive blow