Watch: Corner Footage from Petr Yan’s DQ Loss to Aljamain Sterling at UFC 259

Petr Yan and Aljamain Sterling‘s bantamweight title fight at UFC 259 was shaping up to be quite the scrap. That was, of course, until Yan landed a blatantly illegal knee in the fourth round, forcing him to lose his bantamweight title by disqualification. Immediately following the fight, the UFC broadcast — by way of a Khabib Nurmagomedov translation — reported that one of Yan’s cornermen had instructed him to throw the illegal strike that led to the disqualification.

The UFC’s broadcast partner ESPN has released footage of Yan’s corner at UFC 259.

The video, unfortunately, doesn’t give any clear answers. What is clear, however, is that there was confusion coming from Yan’s corner. With different languages coming from the same corner, and with every cornerman wearing masks, Yan could have easily misheard or misunderstood an instruction.

Aljamain Sterling is now the first fighter to win a UFC title by disqualification. Coming into his showdown with Yan at UFC 259, he had won five consecutive bouts, including an impressive first-round submission of top contender Cory Sandhagen in June 2020.

Given the unique circumstances of the way the fight ended, and the fact that Yan was up one two scorecards at the time of the stoppage, a Yan vs. Sterling rematch seems all-but-certain.

Ben Coate

Ben has been involved with grappling, whether through wrestling or Brazilian jiu-jitsu, essentially his entire life. After wrestling throughout his childhood, Ben found Brazilian jiu-jitsu as a young adult and quickly fell in love. He has been training for over ten years and currently holds the rank of brown belt, and remains involved in both the MMA and BJJ scene. Ben has been writing about combat sports since 2017. He has interviewed and profiled some of MMA's biggest stars, including multiple UFC champions.

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