The main event of UFC 292 pay-per-view (PPV) is slated for Saturday, August 19, 2023 at TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts. Aljamain Sterling is expected to make a rapid turnaround and defend his bantamweight title against No. 2-ranked Sean O’Malley.
But given the recent verbal sparring between Sterling and UFC President Dana White, some combat sports fans are unsure whether the main event will still be in place when the company finally makes its long-awaited return to “Beantown.”
If not, Henry Cejudo, a previous champion, is here to save the day.
“If Aljamain Sterling is playing this game that he’s not ready, he needs a little more time, let’s make an interim fight between me and Sean O’Malley,” Cejudo said on YouTube. “It’s a bigger fight, it’s what the UFC wanted initially. It’s the same reason why they brought me out to chase and beat Aljamain Sterling. After a three-year layoff, coming back, losing by split decision, being ranked now No. 3, that puts me in a really good position.”
At UFC 288 earlier this month in Newark, Cejudo (16-3) battled Sterling to a five-round decision. Despite not receiving a perfect score on the judges’ ballots, “Triple C” didn’t lose much of his standing as a result of his outstanding performance, which some of his contemporaries feel might have easily resulted in a higher score for him.
After UFC 288, it was intended to guarantee another title chance by taking out Merab Dvalishvili, who was rated first.
“I wanted Merab and I’m still willing to wait for Merab, but if that fight with Sean O’Malley happens to open up, I’m 100 percent in,” said Cejudo, 36. I’m not usually the kind of guy to do things like that, but at the moment, I don’t have the gold around my waist. So, yes, if the UFC decides to use me as a backup. I need to speak with Ali (Abdelaziz, the manager), and I do want to get paid for being the backup fighter.
Hopefully, the pay will be better than this “smaller paycheck.”
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