The first round saw Sterling come out aggressive and even caught him with a flying knee strike. This apparently woke up Yan, who scored a few takedowns and even knocked him down with a right hand. Sterling appeared to be rushing his movement as he was tripping and slipping. It was a wild pace early as Sterling was constantly in his face.
Sterling started to slow down in the third round as Yan continued to take over. Yan shut down Sterling’s clinch and takedown attempts but gave him solid competition on the feet if not out striking. Yan started to pick him apart with his sniper-like strikes in the fourth round. Sterling had one knee down and Yan landed a huge knee strike to the face of Sterling. The referee told Yan that Sterling was down before the strike was thrown. Thus, Sterling couldn’t continue, the referee called it a DQ and Sterling won the fight as well as the belt.
Peep the highlights of the fight courtesy of the UFC’s official Twitter account:
Sterling entered this fight on a five-fight winning streak and won his last seven out of eight bouts. The winning streak including decision wins over the likes of Brett Johns, Jimmi Rivera, and Pedro Munoz while he tapped out Cody Stamann, and choked out Cory Sandhagen at the UFC 250 pay-per-view event.
Yan won the vacant bantamweight title when he scored a TKO win over Jose Aldo at the UFC 251 pay-per-view event. Yan entered this fight on a 9-fight winning streak with his previous three fights seeing him beat Urijah Faber by KO at the UFC 245 pay-per-view event, John Dodson by decision at the UFC on ESPN+ 3 from the O2 Arena in Prague, Czech Republic and Jimmie Rivera at the UFC 238 pay-per-view event from the United Center in Chicago, Illinois on June 8, 2019.
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