Henry Cejudo doesn’t have a lot of confidence in Aljamain Sterling showing up on May 6 for their targeted UFC bantamweight title fight.
The promotion has been fairly open regarding their desire to book a fight between Sterling and the returning ‘Triple C’ this spring, but little movement has been made and all fingers seem to point at Sterling. With so much uncertainty surrounding the contest, reports indicate that the promotion wanted No. 1 ranked bantamweight contender Sean O’Malley to serve as the official backup for the fight. However, O’Malley doesn’t appear to be interested in the position.
In a video uploaded to his YouTube channel, Cejudo addressed O’Malley’s apprehension about being the fight’s official backup while also revealing that neither he nor Aljamain Sterling has signed on the dotted line for their proposed UFC 288 showdown.
“Sean O’Malley is talking about he doesn’t want to be a backup for Cejudo vs. Aljo and yeah, he’s right. Nobody has signed yet,” Cejudo revealed. “Again, nobody has signed, but really, in reality, I’m signing. I’m just waiting for Aljo.”
UFC is finalizing a bantamweight title fight between Aljamain Sterling and Henry Cejudo, both fighters announced on social media.
Contracts have not been signed, but the title fight is being targeted for May 6. pic.twitter.com/33RgMaplyb
— ESPN MMA (@espnmma) February 21, 2023
Henry Cejudo Does Not Expect Aljamain Sterling to Show Up for a Fight on May 6
From there, Henry Cejudo reviewed the video clip from Sean O’Malley’s YouTube channel where he expressed little interest in being the official backup for the Sterling vs. Cejudo clash. O’Malley’s biggest reason is that he simply does not want to go through the grueling process of making weight without ever stepping into the Octagon. Responding to O’Malley’s comments, ‘Triple C’ said:
“Now that he explains it, he’s kind of right actually, because of the weight factor. But at the same time, I feel like it would… Even if Sean doesn’t fight me. I’m not pulling out. I think even if Sean O’Malley doesn’t fight me, I think it would still help him and prepare him for this next time around he does have to make weight. I know it sucks. It’s unfortunate, but those are just facts.
Cejudo then expressed his own skepticism toward his May 6 date with the 135-pound champion, predicting in no uncertain terms that Aljamain Sterling will pull out of the fight, and for that reason, O’Malley should reconsider his opportunity to serve as the backup.
“Either way man, I’m looking to put someone to sleep on May 6 and I hope Aljamain doesn’t pull out. And I will tell you this Sean if you’re watching. I have a feeling Aljamain’s gonna pull out. I just sense it. He doesn’t want to fight me. He just wants to keep enjoying his belt. He wants to parade it forever and fight the best matchups for him. So if you want a crack at the title, I would tell you to reconsider and get ready man because I got a feeling Aljo’s gonna pull out.”