Merab Dvalishvilli Confident Sterling vs. Cejudo Headlines UFC 288 in May: ‘That Fight Happening For Sure’

Merab Dvalishvilli claims Sterling vs. Cejudo is a done deal for UFC 288 on May 6 in New Jersey

Merab Dvalishvilli
Courtesy of @ufc on Instagram

Merab Dvalishvilli says that Aljamain Sterling vs. Henry Cejudo is a go for UFC 288 on May 6.

It’s no secret that the promotion has been trying to book a fight between Sterling and the returning two-division UFC champion since late last year. Both fighters have accepted the matchup publicly, but an injury to Sterling and some other difficulties that have not been fully disclosed have kept things from materializing. That is until now according to one-half of this weekend’s UFC Fight Night main event, Merab Dvalishvilli.

‘The Machine’ took a moment away from preparing for his high-stakes bout with Petr Yan to share his thoughts on the status of the 135-pound division and when he could find himself in line for a title opportunity. 

“I think I’ll be number two [in the rankings] and a nine-fight win streak,” Dvalishvilli told Helen Yee. “As you know, I have eight-fight win streak. Whoever will be left over, I will take care of. I will fight anybody. I don’t care. There is so many fighters I can fight and match up good. Or Aljo will beat Henry Cejudo and after Henry he will beat O’Malley and after, Aljo planning to go up and fight Volkanovski. So if that’s the thing and Aljo will go up, I will fight whoever will be number one or title.”

Merab Dvalishvilli Claims Sterling vs. Cejudo Will ‘For Sure’ Go Down at UFC 288 in May

The promotion recently announced that UFC 288 on May 6 will head to the Prudential Center in Newark, NJ. Multiple bouts were announced including the return of Bryce Mitchell and a massive lightweight battle between former titleholder Charles Oliveira and streaking contender Beneil Dariush. However, the anticipated main event showdown between Sterling and Cejudo was nowhere to be found on the docket. Despite this, Dvalishvilli was adamant that the fight is happening and confirmed that ‘Funk Master’ is already in training camp. 

“I don’t know, but that fight happening for sure. Henry is ready. Aljo is ready and that’s it. Aljo is injury-free. He’s doing PT every day and he started training camp.”

Sitting in the No. 3 spot on the UFC’s bantamweight rankings, Merab Dvalishvilli will look to cement his status as a legitimate title contender against former 135-pound king Petr Yan. Coming off an impressive unanimous decision victory over featherweight legend Jose Aldo, Dvalishvill will look to hand ‘No Mercy’ his third straight loss inside the Octagon this Saturday night. 

Published on March 8, 2023 at 1:58 pm
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