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Aljamain Sterling: “Sean O’Malley doesn’t deserve a title shot”

Aljamain Sterling, the UFC bantamweight champion, will shortly face off against his fourth rival.

Sterling has so far retained his dominance over the 135-pound weight division by defeating past champions Petr Yan, TJ Dillashaw, and Henry Cejudo.The next candidate in line has much fewer credentials. Sean O'Malley, who is currently ranked #2, has been waiting for his chance ever since he defeated Yan by a razor-thin split decision at UFC 280 last October.

The victory was the Montana native's only triumph over a ranked foe to date, and it led to substantial judging controversy. A few months earlier, Pedro Munhoz's inability to recuperate from an eye poke caused O'Malley's debut against top 15 opponents to finish in failure.

Many have said that O'Malley's forthcoming title chance is the result of a publicity stunt given his track record and lack of experience fighting the best bantamweight opposition.

During an interview, Sterling said:

"Dana White's Contender Series, (O'Malley) gets a beautiful knockout, gets hyped up... Has some okay fights, starts knocking out guys no longer in the UFC," Sterling said. "You get this guy who kinda comes in, has had these tailor-made fights that were handpicked for him to look like a superstar, and in all fairness, I'm not even mad at that.”

"What I'm more annoyed with is the fact that he has an opportunity to really stake his claim and declare to the division, 'Hey guys, this is who I am and I'm here.' Instead, he goes out and fights 'Chito'... gets kicked once, falls over, gets punched like one time and his lights get shut out," Sterling continued.

I've got the résumé. So I don't think Sean deserves this spot."


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