AllPro Wrestling & MMA

What Is Next For The New Bantamweight Champion (8-21-23)

By: Victor Herrera

Headline Photo Credit: Bob DeChiara-USA Today

Aljamain Sterling likely had his last fight at Bantamweight this past weekend. Sterling is reportedly looking to move up a weight class and compete for the Featherweight Championship against Alexander Volkanovski in his next fight. Sterling had a tough fight on his hands as he was going against one of the young faces of the UFC, and many believed the UFC wanted to be the champion given his controversial scheduled fights. This is “Suga” Sean O’Malley.

Sterling who is known for his All-American wrestling failed to successfully defend his title and lost via TKO to O’Malley in the second round. The way the fight was finished was not a surprise as this was the only way O’Malley theoretically would have an opportunity to win. The fact that O’Malley won did surprise many as it was believed Sterling would retain and vacate the Bantamweight title as one of the best Bantamweights ever.

Aug 19, 2023; Boston, MA, USA; Aljamin Sterling (red gloves) fights Sean OÕMalley (blue gloves) during UFC 292 at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

The plan for Sterling still appears to be a move to Featherweight as nothing has been said to refute this. As for O’Malley, there are many different possibilities, one includes a potential boxing match with world champion Gervonta “Tank” Davis. This was a fight O’Malley said he was interested in leading up to the fight and made an official call out following his victory. The most likely next fight for the new champion is against the only person to defeat him. That is Marlon “Chito” Vera. This fight had controversy because O’Malley had suffered an injury during the fight. Since Merab Dvalishvili who trains with O’Malley is likely to never fight him in the octagon. Given the history and drama involved, an O’Malley and Vera matchup is most probable to happen next.