UFC’s Aljamain Sterling ‘Gunning For The Belt’ vs. Brian Ortega, Responds To Movsar Evloev

Sterling explains why he'd rather fight Ortega than Evloev in his next featherweight fight.

Funkmastermma Ig
(via @ufc - Instagram)

Aljamain Sterling is a top contender in a new division. 

“Welcome To 145”

#8-ranked Calvin Kattar would fall to the former UFC Bantamweight Champion at UFC 300. Sterling’s wrestling would be too much for Kattar to handle, landing him a 30-27 unanimous decision win, his first victory in the UFC featherweight division.

With a shutout performance and a number next to his name come Tuesday, Sterling got some attention from his fellow featherweights, including Russian contender Movsar Evloev.

“Never tell me I’m in a boring fight again,” Evloev wrote on ‘X’ regarding Sterling’s featherweight debut. “Welcome to 145 @funkmastermma.”

Sterling Reacts To Evloev’s Post-Fight Tweet

Boring or not, “Funkmaster” has since responded to Evloev’s social media ‘backhand’.

“I saw Movsar’s tweet to me, Evloev saying, “Welcome to 145″, but also saying he doesn’t want to hear nobody calling him a boring fighter ever again. I was like, I don’t know if that’s supposed to be a compliment. You are almost like backhanding both of us,” Sterling said on ‘The MMA Hour‘. “But, I still like to think my fights are a little bit better than his respectfully.”

Undefeated at 18-0 (8-0 UFC), Evloev says he’d fight one more time as a potential title shot hangs in the balance, citing: “UFC 303 on June 29th, I’m ready to beat anyone who will bring me to the title fight.”

Sterling On Who He Wants Next

Even so, Sterling says he’d prefer to fight a higher-ranked contender in Brian Ortega instead.

“I would actually rather [take] the Ortega fight,” Sterling said, when asked about potentially fighting Evloev. “I’m gunning for the belt so if there’s a fight for me, [if] you are gonna give me the option to pick, I’m gonna pick the highest ranked guy ’cause if I could beat the highest ranked guy, I think it just removes all doubt altogether.

“So, it’s not that that fight with Movsar wouldn’t be fun. I think two grapplers, the way we grapple it could be some very fun scrambles. Especially with his Arnold Allen fight. There was some fun scrambles in there because Arnold tried to get out and tried to do something. It creates opportunities, right? I think when you have a style like mine and his, it could make for a fun fight the, the same way that Diego Lopes made for a fun fight.”

Sterling Explains Why The Ortega Fight Is ‘Just As Entertaining’

Sterling continued, regarding a fight with Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt Ortega.

“But, the Ortega fight is just as entertaining because of the grappling styles. I got the wrestling, he’s got some good solid striking, I think I got some decent striking and we’re both, I think, pretty solid on the ground with jiu-jitsu and I think that makes for a great opportunity for a lot of good scrambles and a lot of good grappling exchanges for people who don’t really understand grappling. I think that would be a cool fight for people to kind of engage in and see where the fight actually takes place. Cause maybe it might take place standing up.”

Ortega Chimes In

Brian Ortega is coming off a successful return to the sport, having submitted former interim champ Yair Rodriguez at UFC Mexico in February. “T-City” is currently ranked two spots above Evloev at #3 in the world. In regards to his next fight:

“Im aware of the callouts and the options,” Ortega wrote on ‘X’ after UFC 300. “It’s time for my manager to do his thing.”

Watch Aljamain Sterling’s full interview below:

Published on April 15, 2024 at 5:16 pm
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