MMA manager Ali Abdelaziz claims Aljamain Sterling vs. Henry Cejudo is a done deal for 2023.
The Dominance MMA founder and BJJ black belt said the UFC has agreed to the matchup despite Sterling previously snubbing Cejudo in favor of Sean O’Malley, who promises he’ll be fighting the winner for the bantamweight championship next year.
“Aljo is fighting Henry Cejudo, it’s done,” Abdelaziz, who manages Cejudo at Dominance MMA, told The Underground (h/t BJPenn.com). “It’s done, the UFC said it’s done. He knows it’s done, and I understand he wants a different fight. But, the man never lost his belt. He’s a two-time champion, defended both belts, and he left on his own. He didn’t leave because he lost, or he was injured, he just needed time off.”
Bold claims and breaking news from @AliAbdelaziz00.— John Morgan (@JohnMorgan_MMA) November 24, 2022
First, the bold claim regarding Islam @MAKHACHEVMMA:
"Islam, respectfully, he will stop Alexander under three rounds."
Next, the breaking news with @HenryCejudo:
"Aljo is fighting Henry Cejuo. It's done." pic.twitter.com/lv59EmIQsC
He continued: “Guess what? It’s champion vs. champion, he never lost his belt. I disagree with Aljamain, I think it’s a big fight. It’s a tougher fight, he knows that, and I know that. I don’t think Aljamain will shy from an opponent, I think he tried to make Henry sweat. But, he’s fighting Henry.”
Sterling last fought at UFC 280, defending his bantamweight title with a TKO win over a clearly compromised and injured T.J. Dillashaw in the co-main event. Prior to that, he beat Petr Yan, silencing his critics with a well-earned split decision in their bantamweight championship rematch at UFC 273.
Cejudo will look to reclaim the 135-pound title when he returns to the UFC next year. He hasn’t fought since his 2020 TKO win over Dominick Cruz at UFC 249.