UFC contender Sterling accuses Russian bantamweight champ Yan of ducking title battle — RT Sport Information
Alleged next contender to Petr Yan’s UFC bantamweight title, Aljamain Sterling says the Russian is “hiding” after suggesting Sterling should be “concerned” about the identity of the next man to fight for the belt .
The 31-year-old Sterling has won five straight UFC titles to pose a serious threat to the world title that Yan claimed on Fight Island last summer by defeating Jose Aldo and a previously won belt won cleared by former champion Henry Cejudo.
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It was a fight that many thought should have taken place between Yan and Sterling, the division’s two formidable fighters, but Sterling now says he is getting tired of what he sees as Yan’s reluctance to be caged with him to step.
When Sterling responded on Twitter to news that the UFC’s upcoming December 12 bumper event was no longer a major event due to the delay in the title fight between Kamaru Usman and Gilbert Burns until early next year, Sterling noted that he was “free that day” and asked Yan for an update on availability.
Yan responded, saying that he had heard that the UFC now had “other plans” for the next bantamweight title bout and that Sterling should be “worried” about his position in line.
In order not to be outdone, New Yorker returned Sterling, saying, “The only person I see concerned is the guy hiding in Dagestan. Wrestle at your damn gym!”
The UFC has been rumored to be holding their cards close to their chests before revealing details of their next bantamweight title defense, in part due to the return in January of former champion TJ Dillashaw, eligible to play after a two-year tenure will ban the use of the banned substance EPA before a flyweight world title fight with Cejudo.
However, Sterling says he knows Yan takes the threat to face him seriously. Yan, who is primarily a boxer, has worked extensively on his floor game in his native Russia – evidence, Sterling says, that Yan is concerned about the possible match with the submission ace.
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“I think there is still a respect factor there,” Sterling said recently of Yan. “I think he knows that I am a dangerous opponent, otherwise he wouldn’t be in Dagestan Wrestling now. … It’s going to be a very interesting night.
“I want to see if he can fill that void in the wrestling and grappling department in a few short months. I think he takes me seriously. I take him seriously and can’t wait for the opportunity.” . “
Yan has shared pictures of himself practicing his argument in Dagestan for the past few months, but his latest social media posts show him back in Yekaterinburg with his team ‘Archangel Michael’.