UFC 288: Sterling vs. Cejudo Predictions

Prediction, Odds & Betting tips for UFC 288: Sterling vs. Cejudo

  • Where: Prudential Center, Newark, New Jersey
  • When: Saturday, May 7

The battle for the bantamweight title is the main event of the UFC 288. Aljamain Sterling, the reigning champion, takes on the former double-champion, Henry Cejudo, who makes his return to the octagon after three years of absence. These two guys are ferocious grapplers and wrestlers, and it will be a spectacle for the fans to watch the clash. We are potentially witnessing the fight of the year.

Sterling vs. Cejudo

UFC 288: Sterling vs. Cejudo Preview

Aljamain Sterling

There were just a few champions in the past who were disliked and doubted like Aljo. The American won his title pretty controversially and, after that, defended it twice in the same manner. We all remember Petr Yan’s illegal knee, which stripped the Russian off the belt, but just a few can recall the second fight.

Back then, the Funk Master won via split decision, trying to avoid the fight and often just holding Yan in a neutral position on the mat, not having the initiative nor planning to attack or pressure the rival. Afterward came his win over TJ Dillashaw, via TKO. Dillashaw picked up a shoulder injury early on, forcing him to fight with just one arm.

That’s why the clash against Cejudo might be decisive for Aljo, who either gets exposed as a “fraud” or becomes a legit champion of the bantamweight division. He is masterful on the mat and has incredible wrestling and grappling knowledge. Elastic and fluid, Sterling has become a menace and wants to keep it that way. 

Henry Cejudo

The Triple C is maybe the best pound-for-pound wrestler in the organization ever. In 2008 he won the gold in Beijing Olympics, and was one of the best freestyle wrestlers in the world during that time. Afterward, he decided to move on and become an MMA fighter, which turned out to be a good decision. Cejudo, one of few double champs in the UFC, became the legend of the organization.

He is a relentless wrestler whose power was unmatched at the time. There weren’t too many guys who could handle his burst and attacks, especially in his prime. Cejudo’s last three wins were all via KO, against TJ Dillashaw, defending the flyweight title, vs. Marlon Moraes, to win the vacant bantamweight title and once he blasted Dominic Cruz in the bantamweight title defense. 

Though, many doubt his current condition because Cejudo didn’t fight in three years, which could be a problem due to ring rust. On the other side, unlike Sterling, who had minor injuries, Cejudo’s body is in perfect shape.

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UFC 288: Sterling vs. Cejudo Predictions

Henry Cejudo is a better striker than Sterling, who might be bigger, but not necessarily stronger. Aljo won’t have an edge on the mat like against some other rivals, and we might see him struggle to get things going. Because of all, our pick here is Cejudo to win, probably via decision.

Our verdict: Cejudo wins

UFC 288: Sterling vs. Cejudo Odds

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