The mind games have already begun between Henry Cejudo and Aljamain Sterling after ‘Triple C’s team was heard chanting toward ‘Funk Master’ during his weigh-ins. UFC 288’s main event features Aljamain Sterling defending the bantamweight title against the returning Henry Cejudo.
Sterling is looking to make history as the first fighter to defend the 135lb three times in succession, whereas ‘Triple C’ aims to become the first person to win the title in the division over the age of 35.
The build-up to the fight between both men has been personal, with each often attacking the other’s personality and skills as a figher. Cejudo even stepped it up a gear after bringing out a plush doll of Sterling at UFC 288’s media day, which he kicked into the crowd.
Now, Cejudo and his team are doing all they can to break Sterling before the main event, this time chanting “and new!” towards the champion whilst he weighed in at 134lbs on the scales. In the video, you can hear the relief of Aljamain Sterling’s team as he made weight, whereas Cejudo’s are continually shouting.
“And new! And new! And new! And new! And new! And new!”
Watch the video here:
Dana White confident Aljamain Sterling can redeem himself with win over Henry Cejudo
Dana White believes a convincing victory over Henry Cejudo will silence the doubters who have criticized Aljamain Sterling’s reign as the bantamweight champion so far. The UFC president is referring to Sterling’s last three performances, where he first won the title via disqualification after Petr Yan landed an illegal knee.
The pair ran then ran the fight back, which saw ‘Funk Master’ have his hand raised contentiously again, this time via split-decision.
The third fight and his second title defense was against T.J. Dillashaw, whom he TKO’d in the second round. It was later revealed Dillashaw was carrying a shoulder injury into the fight, which once again cast doubt over Sterling’s ability.
Speaking with The Schmo, White stated that a win over Cejudo for Aljamain Sterling would cement his legacy in the UFC. He said:
“Here’s the thing for Aljamain. Aljamain has had some unfortunate situations in his run but like we were talking today, I mean the guy has most wins, the most consecutive, whatever it is. I think that a win over Henry Cejudo will give this kid the credentials he needs now. This will solidify him and anybody who has any doubts about him in the past and some of things that have happened, that Cejudo pointed out, beating Henry will squash that.”
Catch the interview here (1:50):