LAS VEGAS – UFC president Dana White has seemingly upped the stakes for UFC 250 bantamweights Cory Sandhagen and Aljamain Sterling.

In a pre-event news conference held Friday, MMA Junkie asked White if the winner of Sandhagen (12-1 MMA, 5-0 UFC) vs. Sterling (18-3 MMA, 10-3 UFC) will solidify himself as the first challenger in line for the winner of the vacant UFC bantamweight title fight between Jose Aldo and Petr Yan, which is expected to take place sometime this year.

“Yeah, I agree,” White said, when asked. “For sure.”

UFC 250 takes place Saturday at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas. The main card airs on pay-per-view following prelims on ESPN and early prelims on UFC Fight Pass/ESPN+.

Sandhagen has yet to lose in the UFC. After defeating Austin Arnett in his short-notice promotional debut, Sandhagen beat Iuri Alcantara, Mario Bautista, John Lineker, and Raphael Assuncao en route to the Sterling matchup.

A longtime UFC bantamweight contender, Sterling is riding a four-fight winning streak for the first time since 2014-2015 – a run that kicked off his promotional tenure. In this stretch, Sterling has defeated Brett Johns, Cody Stammann, Jimmie Rivera, and Pedro Munhoz.

The vacant title fight between Aldo (28-6 MMA, 10-5 UFC) and Yan (14-1 MMA, 6-0 UFC) has not yet been booked. White said that while the fight is expected to be the next 135-pound title fight, he jumped the gun with his previous announcement.

“I think I prematurely announced it like I do sometimes,” White said. “We don’t have all the info for that yet.”