Former UFC bantamweight champion Aljamain Sterling recently competed at the Abu Dhabi Jiu Jitsu Championship (ADXC) event in Abu Dhabi. According to fellow UFC star Chase Hooper, who also competed at the event, Sterling ran into some trouble for walking around shirtless during the trip.
Hooper revealed during a recent podcast appearance that Abu Dhabi has strict rules about public dress and conduct, as it is a conservative Muslim country. He said that Sterling tried to walk around on the beach without a shirt on, which is allowed. However, as soon as he stepped onto the boardwalk while still shirtless, security personnel told him to put his shirt back on.
“They tell women, like, don’t wear crop tops and, like, all that type of s**t,” Hooper said about the rules in Abu Dhabi. “But, you know, so we we got some stuff, like, for my wife to make sure that she was, like, cosher. Or, I guess, I’m not kosher. I mean, they’re not really down with that.”
Hooper went on to explain that if you don’t follow the rules and put your shirt back on when told, security will fine or even arrest you.
“And, like, I’m not trying to f**k around like that in a a country that I don’t know,” Hooper said.
While it’s unclear if Sterling actually got fined or arrested, it seems he wisely decided to follow the rules and put his shirt back on when asked. Hooper joked that he imagined Sterling “put his shirt back on” to avoid any serious trouble in the strict country.
This just goes to show that it’s important to respect local laws and customs when traveling abroad. What might be considered harmless in one country could land you in hot water in another. Sterling learned that lesson firsthand during his recent Abu Dhabi trip.