Sean O’Malley casts doubt on Aljamain Sterling moving up to featherweight: “He’s insecure”

By Harry Kettle - November 27, 2023

UFC bantamweight champion Sean O’Malley has cast doubt on Aljamain Sterling’s longevity at featherweight.

Aljamain Sterling posing

Earlier this year, Sean O’Malley knocked out Aljamain Sterling to claim the bantamweight crown. Prior to doing so, ‘Funk Master’ had teased the idea of making a move up to featherweight from 135 pounds. Even in the aftermath of the loss to O’Malley, Sterling made it clear that a switch to featherweight is still very much something he’s considering.


Either way, there’s still a big future ahead for Aljamain, depending on how long he wants to continue on for. In the eyes of his former rival Sean O’Malley, Sterling could have some interesting fights at 145 – but there are still some questions to be asked.

O’Malley questions Sterling

“I think if he goes up to 145, it’d be super interesting,” O’Malley said. “I think there’s a lot of interesting fights up there at ‘45, I think his weight gets big enough for that. You know, I’m probably 160 right now, I probably not getting over this. He’s probably 175. Like, it just doesn’t make sense to go back to 135, for his health, for his longevity.”

“I think there’s certain matchups at 145 that he could do good,” he added. “What about Aljo versus, like, Brian Ortega? That’s a sweet fight.”

“He’ll probably go back down to 135, just because he’s insecure and he wants to be stronger and bigger than these guys,” O’Malley concluded. “Why else would he not fight at 145? It’s not like his skills aren’t there. His skills, he’s good. Not as good as me, but he’s good. You know what I mean? He could go up to 145, I think he’d do fine up there.”

Quotes via MMA Mania

Do you agree with Sean O’Malley? Let us know, BJPENN Nation!


Aljamain Sterling Sean O'Malley UFC