Aljamain Sterling plans lengthy hiatus following UFC 280 title defense: “I don’t have the desire, nor the motivation to go through another training camp like that”

By Harry Kettle - November 1, 2022

Aljamain Sterling has revealed that he may not return to the Octagon until June 2023 after his win at UFC 280 last month.

Aljamain Sterling

A few weeks back in the co-main event of UFC 280, Aljamain Sterling made a statement. He defeated TJ Dillashaw via ground and pound, and although he did so thanks to a shoulder injury sustained by Dillashaw, ‘Funk Master’ executed his part of the assignment perfectly.

Afterwards, understandably, there was a lot of speculation regarding his future.

Some said he should face Henry Cejudo next, whereas others believe Sean O’Malley has earned a shot. There was no definitive answer either way but in a recent interview, Sterling has given an update on his next move.

“I haven’t even talked to the UFC, and I don’t have the desire, nor the motivation to go through another training camp like that…” Sterling said. “So if they were to try to entice me to come back sooner rather than later, it’s going to have to be worth my time, because I’d like to catch up on things that I haven’t had the moments to sit down and smell the roses for a bit. Two fights [in 2022]. People that think champions defend their belts more than two times in a year, you’re drunk. Most times a champion — go back and look through history — most times a champion usually fights one time a year, if they’re lucky. Two times is ideal, which I already did, and if I want to take a break, I think I earned that break.

Sterling’s next step

“I just need a little bit more time. Maybe I get the itch sooner rather than later, but as of right now, I don’t want to fight until June. I think that’s more then enough time to get me all the things that I need to get in motion so I can set these things up and then I can focus solely on just the fight. That’s what I want to do.”

Quotes via MMA Fighting

Who should Aljamain Sterling fight next? Let us know in the comments, BJPENN Nation!


Aljamain Sterling UFC