UFC Bantamweight Champion Aljamain Sterling hosted an open workout for the public on Long Island Friday, April 28, ahead of his highly anticipated UFC 288 bout set for May 6 in Newark, N.J. against former double champ Henry Cejudo.
The event took place at LAW MMA in Garden City, where Sterling has been training for his upcoming fight. [Keep scrolling to see photos from the training session.]
Sterling, who is determined to make Cejudo regret ever calling him out, showed off his impressive skills and gave fans a glimpse of what to expect on fight night. The Uniondale native is currently riding high on an eight-fight win streak and has an impressive record of 22-3.
Sterling said he is aiming to finish Cejudo in the second round, preferably by knockout. “I would like to punch this guy’s lights out,” he said during the open workout.
Sterling has been training at LAW MMA, owned by former UFC Middleweight Champion Chris Weidman, where he’s been working hard to prepare for his upcoming fight. His opponent, Cejudo, is a former flyweight and bantamweight champion who announced his retirement from the UFC in 2020 after defeating Dominick Cruz.
The trash talk between Sterling and Cejudo started after Sterling defeated Yan last April, leading to the upcoming match in May. Sterling is eager to prove his worth and make a statement against Cejudo, and the open workout was just one of the many steps he’s taking to prepare for the fight. Fans who attended the event were treated to a preview of what’s to come and were undoubtedly left excited for the highly anticipated bout between two of the UFC’s best bantamweights.
Sterling said after he takes care of business, you’ll probably catch him celebrating back on Long Island.
“After this fight’s over, you’ll probably catch me in RVC, or at Johnny McGorey’s Pub [in Massapequa],” he told the packed house. “If you see me, come say, ‘What’s up.'”
Teammates on the card
In addition to Sterling’s upcoming bout against Cejudo, his teammate Matt Frevola, a Huntington native, is also set to fight on the UFC 288 card. Frevola will be taking on No. 13 ranked lightweight Drew Dober in what promises to be an exciting fight.
Frevola has been training alongside Sterling at LAW MMA, and is no stranger to the UFC octagon. With a record of 10-3-1, Frevola is looking to make a name for himself in the lightweight division and climb up the rankings. He’s coming off an impressive first-round KO victory over Ottman Azaitar in Madison Square Garden.
His opponent, Dober, is a seasoned veteran of the sport with a record of 26-11-0. The two fighters are sure to put on a show for fans in what could be a closely contested bout.
With both Sterling and Frevola representing Long Island, fans in the area will undoubtedly be cheering them on as they look to make their mark in the UFC.
Fighting on Long Island
Aljamain Sterling expressed his desire to fight on Long Island, where he was born and raised.
The UFC Bantamweight champion noted that he had never had the opportunity to fight professionally on the island due to mix martial arts being illegal in the state until 2016.
He said before he retires, he would like to headline a fight in either UBS Arena or at the Nassau Coliseum.
“I would love to fight on Long Island,” he told Greater Long Island. “That would be a dream come true. Especially at the Coliseum because I grew up right in Uniondale.”