Thursday, February 25, 2021

Dana White Won’t Declare Aljamain Sterling The No. 1 Contender: ‘He’s Up There’

Aljamain Sterling is not the clear-cut No. 1 contender according to Dana White as many fans and media seem to think.

At UFC 250, Sterling was set to fight Cory Sandhagen, in what many people considered the real bantamweight title fight. Most were expecting it to go the distance. But, Sterling got it done early with a submission in just 88 seconds. The win improved his record to 19-3 and is now on a five-fight winning streak with wins over Sandhagen, Pedro Munhoz, Jimmie Rivera, Cody Stamann, and Brett Johns.

Although Sterling has the resume to be the No. 1 contender, White won’t say for certain he is next for Petr Yan who won the vacant title back at UFC 251.

“I don’t know,” White answered when asked about Sterling receiving the next title shot at the UFC Fight Island 2 post-fight press conference (via MMAFighting). “He’s in there, he’s up there, he’s one of them.”

The news, of course, was disappointing for Aljamain Sterling who took to social media to respond to the talk that he may be passed over for the next title shot.

It is no doubt disappointing for Aljamain Sterling that he is not being declared the next guy for Petr Yan. So, perhaps the UFC is looking to go in a different direction like Marlon Moraes. Or, a bigger name in Cody Garbrandt who has a feud with Yan. Regardless, too many, Sterling is the rightful next contender at 135-pounds.