icon bookmark-bicon bookmarkicon cameraicon checkicon chevron downicon chevron lefticon chevron righticon chevron upicon closeicon v-compressicon downloadicon editicon v-expandicon fbicon fileicon filtericon flag ruicon full chevron downicon full chevron lefticon full chevron righticon full chevron upicon gpicon insicon mailicon moveicon-musicicon mutedicon nomutedicon okicon v-pauseicon v-playicon searchicon shareicon sign inicon sign upicon stepbackicon stepforicon swipe downicon tagicon tagsicon tgicon trashicon twicon vkicon yticon wticon fm

‘Glad to see the champ is fine now’: Petr Yan mocks Aljamain Sterling for ‘celebrating’ controversial UFC 259 DQ win

‘Glad to see the champ is fine now’: Petr Yan mocks Aljamain Sterling for ‘celebrating’ controversial UFC 259 DQ win
Petr Yan has scolded the man who controversially took the 135lbs title from him at Saturday's UFC 259, saying that he is 'glad' that Aljamain Sterling seems to have recovered from the controversial fight-ending illegal knee.

Despite being down on the scorecards, New York's Sterling was awarded the UFC bantamweight title after being deemed unable to continue after absorbing the illegal strike from Yan in the fourth round.

Also on rt.com ‘I didn’t mean it’: Petr Yan issues apology after being DISQUALIFIED for illegal strike in UFC 259 title fight with Sterling

But despite initially appearing to distance himself from the manner in which he 'won' the world title, the Russian has hit out at Sterling for celebrating in the wake of the bout.

Top contender Sterling reacted to the title win by throwing the championship belt to the canvas, indicating to many that he didn't appreciate the circumstances which led to his title reign after Yan was disqualified for landing the crushing blow to Sterling's temple while he was classified as a 'downed opponent'.

The unified rules of mixed martial arts state that a fighter is ineligible to throw a knee or kick to the head of an opponent who has either of his knees or hands touching the canvas.

Sterling, who was on both of his knees at the time of the strike, immediately sprawled backwards after the shot landed and despite being given time to recover his senses was pulled from the fight and awarded the win.

UFC boss Dana White indicated that Sterling and Yan will rematch as soon as possible to bring a sense of closure to what has been a months-long feud between the two standout bantamweights - but ahead of that, Yan turned up the temperature of their rivalry by hitting out at Sterling's post-fight celebrations.

Various photographs issued to social media showed a smiling Sterling holding the bantamweight title over his shoulder in the company of teammates such as Georgia's Merab Dvalishvili and Al Iaquinta - with Yan sarcastically prodding Sterling in his response to say that he is "glad to see the champ is fine now."

Sterling has since addressed the controversy of his title win online, writing on Instagram: "I didn't win the UFC belt the way I envisioned it, but I also didn't do anything illegal.

"My friends and family flew miles to come see me and asked me to hoist the belt up as a champion, because I carried myself as such.

Also on rt.com ‘He takes the title and an Oscar’: Fans claim Sterling FAKED effects of illegal knee which cost Yan belt at UFC 259

"If that offends you, then you have no love in your life, and your own issues to sort out. I'm the "champ" but I won't personally feel 100% validation until I defend this the way I envisioned winning it in the first place!

"Either way, I can't wait to be cleared. The future is bright and I can't wait to see what is in store for me."

"Stay the course. Make adjustments. Life. Moves. On."

Dear readers and commenters,

We have implemented a new engine for our comment section. We hope the transition goes smoothly for all of you. Unfortunately, the comments made before the change have been lost due to a technical problem. We are working on restoring them, and hoping to see you fill up the comment section with new ones. You should still be able to log in to comment using your social-media profiles, but if you signed up under an RT profile before, you are invited to create a new profile with the new commenting system.

Sorry for the inconvenience, and looking forward to your future comments,

RT Team.

Podcasts