Aljamain Sterling reveals KO from Zabit during training messed him up more than the KO from Marlon

Aljamain Sterling revealed that he was once knocked out by featherweight contender Zabit Magomedsharipov during training. UFC bantamweight champion compared it to the knockout he received from Marlon Moraes.

Aljamain Sterling just retained his bantamweight title last April against his rival Petr Yan. Many fans favored Yan following Sterling’s victory via disqualification in their first match. Eventually, Sterling came out victorious, winning his second fight with Yan via split decision. This result caused a controversy as many fans think that Petr Yan won in most of the rounds.

Sterling shared a story where he was sparring with UFC featherweight prospect Zabit Magomedsharipov back in 2017. He referred to Zabit as a ‘ninja’ for pulling off crazy moves during a sparring session.

“I had one [spar] with Zabit. He threw a 360 spinning ninja kick. And the leg wrapped around my neck. I closed my eyes. I’ve never seen a ninja jump at me like that in a room ever. I didn’t know that guy was. But I feel like I was set up for failure. He was doing side kicks, hook kicks, and I was like ‘Yo, what the f*ck is going on?’ I’m just getting ragdolled.” Sterling said during a talk in the Joe Rogan Experience podcast.

In another interview with The Score, Sterling said his team got the footage of their sparring session. However, they haven’t released it yet.

“I’ve got it on video, it’s pretty nasty. Hopefully, Mark Henry leaves that in the archives.” Sterling said.

Sterling said the sparring session was after his loss against Raphael Assuncao in January 2017.

Zabit Magomedsharipov was a former featherweight champion in Absolute Championship Berkut (ACB), a Russian based MMA promotion. He joined the UFC in 2017 after defending his ACB title one time. Since then, the 31-year-old has gone 6-0 in the UFC. With his latest bout against Calvin Kattar in 2019.

Unfortunately, he was removed from the rankings due to inactivity. He was ranked number 3 in the featherweight division in April 2021. He is reportedly suffering from health issues related to his immune system. And his diaphragm needed surgery. Even though his health issues are rumored to be resolved, Magomedsharipov likely isn’t coming back.

As per Helwani, he’s had a ‘spiritual awakening’ and is uninterested in a return.

Earlier this year rumors floated that Zabit had started med school – those rumors were debunked by us.