Aljamain Sterling shuts down talk of having future UFC fights at bantamweight: “There’s no more 135”

By Harry Kettle - January 10, 2024

Former UFC champion Aljamain Sterling has confirmed that he will never return to the bantamweight division.

Aljamain Sterling

Over the course of the last few years, Aljamain Sterling has cemented his legacy at 135 pounds. He became a household name and held the championship high, successfully defending it on three occasions. Unfortunately, his run came to an end last summer when he was beaten via TKO by Sean O’Malley.

RELATED: Aljamain Sterling was shocked by the dismal pay-per-view numbers generated from UFC 292 fight with Sean O’Malley

Alas, instead of dwelling on the past, the 34-year-old has chosen to look to the future. The next step in his journey will see him make the move up to featherweight, where he will face Calvin Kattar at UFC 300.

Ahead of his shift to 145, Sterling used a recent interview to confirm that he does not plan on returning to bantamweight.

Sterling confirms permanent featherweight switch

“Safe to say (I’m done at bantamweight),” Sterling told MMA Junkie. “One of my managers was asking about that, about going down to 135, and I said, ‘Brother, let’s stop this conversation right here.’

“There’s no more 135. I didn’t even want to do it the last time. Whatever, I’m not going to bring it up again because people are going to say I’m making excuses, but this is all factual, but 135 is done.”

“I’m excited to get back,” Sterling said. “I think that’s the most important thing. I want the fans to know I’m excited to get back, and I’m going to have new life, new energy at this weight class.

“I’m definitely nervous because I’m used to being the bigger guy even though I don’t get that big when I rehydrate at 135, but I think I left some stuff in the gym cutting down to 135, so I’d like to see what I can do at 145, and I’m going to shock the world.”

Quotes via MMA Junkie

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