Merab Dvalishvili explains why he would never fight Aljamain Sterling

By Adam D Martin - September 24, 2021

One of the rising contenders at 135lbs, Merab Dvalishvili explained why he would never fight UFC bantamweight champion, Aljamain Sterling.


Dvalishvili is currently riding a six-fight win streak into his bantamweight bout against Marlon Moraes at this Saturday’s UFC 266 event. Should Dvalishvili win the fight, he would move closer to the top-five of the 135lbs weight class, and therefore, closer to the man at the top, his teammate at Serra-Longo Fight Team, Sterling. The team right now has two of the best bantamweights in the world in the same stable, which could lead to a tricky situation if both men keep winning. But as far as Dvalishvili is concerned, he will not be fighting Sterling, regardless of whether or not there is a belt on the line between them.

“We are good friends and we’re not going to fight each other. Aljo is champion. I believe he will defend his belt and he will be a champion for a long time. I have to win a couple more fights to fight for the title, but we will figure something out (if I get there). But one thing is for sure: We’re never going to fight. Me and Aljo, we’re never going to fight each other,” Dvalishvili told reporters ahead of UFC 266 (h/t

Dvalishvili’s goal in the sport is to fight for the title and become the champion himself, but the fact that his teammate and friend Sterling holds the belt right now makes that difficult. But while Dvalishvili says that right now he won’t be fighting Sterling, perhaps he won’t have to worry about making that decision is Petr Yan wins the rematch at UFC 267.

Do you understand why Merab Dvalishvili would never fight Aljamain Sterling, or do you think he should be more open to the idea of it?


Aljamain Sterling Merab Dvalishvili UFC