August 2, 2021

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Manager explains Petr Yan’s move to American Top Team

2 min read

ABU DHABI — Petr Yan will undergo preparations for his first title defense in a new gym.

The UFC bantamweight champion defends his belt against Aljamain Sterling on March 6 at UFC 259, and he’ll gear up at American Top Team.

Yan (15-1 MMA, 7-0 UFC) moved to ATT in Coconut Creek, Fla. earlier this month. He previously did training camps in Tiger Muay Thai in Thailand. The move is no small decision for any fighter, and it involved many factors.

Speaking with MMA Junkie, Yan’s manager, Danny Rubenstein, explained why the Russian switched camps ahead of his first fight as champion.

“Petr went down to Miami and is training at American Top Team,” Rubenstein said. “We got him sorted out with coaches there and his living situation. The decision to move him down to Miami was because Thailand, where he did all of his camp, is closed and not even closed, but a lot of the fighters who were training full time there are no longer there, so he was lacking training partners there.

“He started his first three, four weeks of camp when we found out about the new March date. He stared his camp in Russia and I think it makes sense to go out to ATT and acclimate to the U.S. a little better. He’s fought in the U.S. before and he’s never had issues. But for a championship, and it’s five rounds, and we have to prepare for Aljo, I think it makes sense to send him down to American Top Team. They have a great gym and great coaches and he’s really enjoying his time down there.”

Yan won the UFC title in a fight for the vacant belt against former bantamweight champion Jose Aldo back at UFC 251 in July. He was originally scheduled to fight Sterling at UFC 256 in December, but was forced to withdraw due to personal reasons.

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