The boys are shippin' up to Boston.
Aljamain Sterling is scheduled to defend his bantamweight title against rising star Sean O'Malley at UFC 292 on August 19. The five-round championship fight will take place at TD Garden in Boston, marking the promotion's first event in Beantown since 2019.
Sterling is currently a -240 favorite over O'Malley.
Other fights on the UFC 292 card include:
Aljamain Sterling vs Sean O'Malley Odds
Odds as of August 14
Per our odds calculator, Sterling's -240 status awards him a 70.59% implied chance of victory, with a $100 bet paying out $141.67. At +200, O'Malley gets a 33.33% chance and a $100 bet cashes at $300.
Sterling vs O'Malley Tale Of The Tape
|Fighter||Aljamain Sterling||Sean O'Malley|
|Record||23-3 (15-3 UFC)||16-1 (8-1 UFC)|
|Avg. Fight Time||13:36||9:01|
|Sig. Strikes Per Minute||4.78||7.43|
|Sig. Strikes Absorbed Per Minute||2.37||3.54|
|Takedowns Per 15 Minutes||2.02||0.45|
Sterling vs O'Malley Preview
Will this be the day the Sugar Show gets its world title episode? I'm quite skeptical. Let's dive in.
How Sterling Wins
At 5-foot-11, O'Malley is one of the tallest bantamweights on the roster, and that would typically pose challenges for a normal 135-pounder. Not Sterling, though. "Funk Master" has super long limbs, making him an expert at grappling transitions and "backpacking," where he spiders onto his opponent's back for a choke.
Sterling's go-to strategy will be about getting this bout to the ground. O'Malley's takedown defense has improved over the years, but he's still no match for Sterling's relentlessness. Petr Yan man-handled O'Malley on the ground at UFC 280, which is nothing compared to the cardio and wrestling speed that Sterling brings. Watch for Aljo to dip and jab his way through O'Malley's long strikes to set up the level change.
How O'Malley Wins
"Sugar" considers himself a gangster and a sniper — now it's time to back that up. Sterling's chin is breakable (see his KO loss to Marlon Moraes), and O'Malley is very, very capable of lasering shots at the champ's head. The 28-year-old must take advantage at the beginning of each round, while the fighters are still standing. Sterling is relatively impotent as a striker, which means O'Malley can blaze in, spin, throw knees and high kicks. The threat of a takedown always looms, but O'Malley will be drilling up his defense all camp.
For O'Malley to triumph at UFC 292, something extraordinary must be done. But Suga Sean is a magical fighter with cannon-like strikes, so I wouldn't count him out for a second.
Aljamain Sterling vs Sean O'Malley Pick
I'm done fading Sterling. He's not the most exciting fighter in the world, but he's damn good at his craft. Aljo moves pretty well, which gives me faith in his ability to evade O'Malley's advances. After that, I think Sterling wrangles him to the ground and escapes with a decision victory.