Strickland pulled a stunning upset when he dethroned Israel Adesanya to become middleweight champion at UFC 293. A main training partner of 2022 PFL welterweight champion Sy, both men have been instrumental in each other’s training camps.
So, Sy knew just how good Strickland (28-5 MMA, 15-5 UFC) is.
“I’ve said it so many times: There was nothing with that performance from Sean that was surprising for me,” Sy told reporters during a media scrum at Xtreme Couture. “I’m so happy for him, so proud of him, and he’s one of my main training partners. He was actually my last round now before coming here. We just help each other grow. I’m looking forward to keep growing with him.”
Sy (16-6-2 MMA, 10-4-2 PFL) will look to avenge his 2021 semifinals loss to Magomed Magomedkerimov when the pair rematch in their welterweight final at the 2023 PFL Championships on Nov. 23, which takes place at The Anthem in Washington D.C. and streams live on ESPN+ PPV.
Sy’s road to the finals includes two highlight reel finishes – shutting down Jarrah Al-Silawi with a nasty knee to the body and a walkoff wheel kick of Shane Mitchell. He punched his ticket against Magomedkerimov with a split decision win over Carlos Leal.
For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for 2023 PFL Championships.