The future of former UFC bantamweight champion Aljamain Sterling remains uncertain, but he does have at least one option on the table.
Sterling most recently competed in the main event of UFC 292 this past August, where he headlined in defense of his title against Sean O'Malley. While he'd previously stood challenged from Petr Yan, TJ Dillashaw, and Henry Cejudo, "Sugar" was able to bring his lengthy, record-breaking reign to an end.
Ahead of time, "Funk Master" was plotting a move up to the featherweight division to pursue 'champ-champ' status. But having been stopped by O'Malley, Sterling appeared to backtrack on his ambitions at the higher weight.
And although he remains dubious about a venture to 145 pounds for the first time in his UFC career, Sterling has received a fight offer for his possible debut in the division.
During a recent episode of his YouTube podcast, The Weekly Scraps, Sterling revealed that the UFC has offered him numerous opponents for a first dip into the featherweight waters.
While he rejected a couple due to a 'friendship' with them, "Funk Master" named #7 man Calvin Kattar as the highest-ranked opponent proposed to him by the promotion.
"Breaking news, I was offered Kattar, amongst three others," Sterling said. "Two other guys were actually friends, so I said. 'Respectfully, I would actually like to decline those.' One of them was coming off a loss, and Kattar was the highest-ranking opponent out of all of them."
But undecided on his divisional future, Sterling is set for weight tests at the UFC Performance institute in Las Vegas before choosing whether to commit to or abandon a potential featherweight venture.
"He's (Kattar's) big, bro... He beat Giga (Chikadze)," Sterling noted. "I don't know, I carry the weight well, where I feel like I don't feel that big. I think when I stand next to these '45ers, I don't feel like we're the same size. That's just my personal opinion... (Being an in-betweener) sucks, man. Honestly, I'm really not worried about the strength part."
"I like Kattar. I'm just not really looking to go up and take a chance. I don't mind taking a chance, but I'm not going up to say, 'Hey, I'm coming here for second place.' If I go up, I'm going up to be number one," Sterling continued. "There's no half-assing this process. That's the thing I have to figure out."
In terms of the other names, one could be Chikadze. Sterling has previously stated that he wouldn't fight another Georgian in Ilia Topuria owing to his connection to teammate Merab Dvalishvili.
Sterling evidently remains without a date to work towards in his calendar, but it appears that the likely matchup should the former bantamweight champ move up would pit him against "The Boston Finisher."
Now, eyes will be on Sterling as he gets set to test his physical capabilities at the UFC PI when it comes to a potential featherweight switch.