CHICAGO – There was a time when Aljamain Sterling fought with a hidden element of worry in the back of his mind. Whether it was defending his undefeated record or concerning himself with not being knocked out, the 29-year-old Uniondale, N.Y., native now realizes he fought the previous chapter of his fighting career with mental baggage. But after experiencing both the loss of his unbeaten record (to Bryan Caraway) in 2016 and being on the receiving end of a savage KO (at the hands – and knee – of Marlon Moraes) a year later, “The Funkmaster” (17-3 MMA, 9-3 UFC) told MMA Junkie he feels like he’s a better fighter for the experience. “I had one of the worst losses you could possibly ever have in the UFC or in any type of combat sports,” he said during fight week in Chicago ahead of UFC 238. “It’s kind of ironic. It’s infamous for me always going to the cage and doing the dab, and then I lose in that type of fashion.

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