During a faceoff with Aljamain Sterling, Merab Dvalishvili took Sean O’Malley’s jacket, resulting in a scuffle

At UFC 288, tensions rose between Sean O’Malley and Aljamain Sterling after Sterling defeated Henry Cejudo. O’Malley, who is shaping up to be a top contender at bantamweight, exchanged heated words with Sterling, and Sterling’s teammate Merab Dvalishvili joined in by taking O’Malley’s jacket. Fortunately, security stepped in before an altercation could occur.

During the confrontation, O’Malley repeatedly insulted Sterling’s physical appearance and challenged him to make weight for a fight. Sterling fired back, questioning O’Malley’s decision to turn down a title shot.

Sterling went on to defend his bantamweight title successfully for the third time and win his ninth consecutive UFC match. He also achieved a record for the most consecutive title defenses in the 135-pound division.

As the staredown ensued, O’Malley removed his jacket, leading Dvalishvili to wear it instead. Despite the heated exchange, O’Malley secured his potential title shot with a victory over ex-champ Petr Yan in March.

UFC President Dana White and security restored order, and Sterling challenged O’Malley to a showdown in September. The potentially explosive confrontation at UFC 288 was a reminder of the passion and intensity that characterizes combat sports.


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