Aljamain Sterling, a rising star in MMA

by Connor ~ April 16th, 2012
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Aljamain Sterling has been competing as a professional mixed martial artist since April of 2011. He has compiled a perfect record of six win and no losses. He is a young adult who was once inspired to fight by the UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones. Aljamain said in an interview that he was once introduced to Jones, Sterling told the champ that he thought he could do this for a living. That is what Sterling did and is still determined up to this day. Sterling wrestled in College and later joined Team Bombsqaud and joined the likes of fighter like Pat Audinwood, Kenny Foster, Mike Massenzio, Anthony Leone, and many more. Sterling has earned notable victories over Claudio Ledesma, current CFFC flyweight champ Sean Snatella, and Casey Johnson who he defeated this past Saturday at CFFC 14. Last Wednesday Sterling told MMA Junkie that Johnson was going to be his toughest opponent yet, but he saw holes in his game.

Sterling defended his title against Colorado’s own Casey Johnson this past Saturday at CFFC 14 in Borgata casino and spa in Atlantic City, New Jersey. Sterling submission defense looked really good as he was caught in a guillotine and triangle choke in round one. The highlight of the fight would be the triangle choke. Johnson sunk in a very deep choke. Aljamain picked up his opponent, instead of slamming Johnson Aljamain pressed Johnson’s body against the cage. That caused Johnson to get a little loose on his hold.  “I was a little worried, but I’ve put myself through a lot of bad positions in practice and tried my hardest to see how long I could fight before tapping.” said Sterling. Sterling later confessed that he learned that technique from his teammate Kenny Foster when he fought Ronnie Mann in Bellator. Foster also was successful this past weekend at Bellator 66. Sterling added that in his last fight vs. former CFFC bantamweight champ Sean Santella, he tried the same move where he lifted Santella and laid him against the cage. The second round was basically all Sterling as his takedowns were too much for Casey Johnson. It was the third round where Johnson gave up his back. Sterling worked for the rear naked choke and sunk his arm under Johnson’s chin. Shortly after it was Johnson who tapped, Aljamain had defended his CFFC title and remained champion. Even though Sterling finished the fight, he admitted it was still a very tough fight. “This fight ranks as my toughest fight to date because I was caught in a very tight fight ending triangle that would have forced most to sleep or to tap.”

Aljamain made it clear that even though he was victorious he was not overly thrilled with his ground and pound. He told NJ MMA NEWS last Wednesday that his ground and pound game was something he had been working on for this fight. One thing Sterling thought he really improved on was his striking. He said he became more technical and more affective. Sterling looked very confident on his feet and seemed like Johnson was taking some tough strikes to his face and body. Sterling expressed how much his striking improved “I was more comfortable standing up this time around, knowing that I could really land some solid strikes.”

A wrestler, talented, and a lot of heart sounds like the formula to a true champion. Even though Aljamain may not be perfect in those categories, he definitely possesses those traits and will work to become stronger in every aspect. Sterling is a very young talented fighter, who is also very humble and down to earth. Sterling is a one of twenty brothers and sisters in his family, but has managed to single himself out as a very talented fighter who has a true gift. A handworker and the skills to perform is what is needed to make it to the top of this sport. Sterling definitely has the potential and at the rate he is on now, it may be sooner than later we see this bantamweight on the big stage.

Article written by Connor Northrup

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