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Video: Merab Dvalishvili steals Sean O’Malley’s jacket during Aljamain Sterling faceoff, melee ensues

Sean O’Malley walked into the lion’s den after Aljamain Sterling’s UFC 288 win over Henry Cejudo and nearly touched off a melee at Prudential Center in Newark, N.J.

O’Malley, the contender apparent at bantamweight, faced off with Sterlng and exchanged unpleasantries, prompting Sterling teammate Merab Dvalishvili to retort by stealing his jacket.

Thankfully, security intervened before O’Malley and Dvalishvili could go at it – and Sterling could step to the defense of his teammate, who paraded the Michael Jackson “Thriller” lookalike atop the cage.

Check out O’Malley’s octagon entrance and square-off with Sterling, who took home a split decision via scores of 48-47 twice with one judge dissenting for Cejudo by the same tally.

“You better look better than that,” O’Malley repeated over and over again before adding, “You looked like s***. You better be able to cut weight real soon.”

“So why’d you run?” Sterling fired back. “Why’d you turn down the title shot? That’s what I thought. Because I’ll drag your ass up and down this octagon. ... Get this piece of s*** out of my cage.”

Sterling notched his third title defense as bantamweight champion and his ninth straight octagon win. He also set a record for most consecutive title defenses in the 135-pound division.

In the midst of his staredown with Sterling, O’Malley slipped off his jacket, and Dvalishvili modeled it.

O’Malley secured his likely title shot with a decision win over ex-champ Petr Yan in March. Sterling challenged O’Malley to a showdown in September as UFC President Dana White and UFC security restored order.

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