Don’t expect Sean O’Malley to be added to the upcoming Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) year-end pay-per-view (PPV) extravaganza.
“Suga” had been pushing to fight before the end of 2023, and had specifically suggested he’d like to fight at UFC 296 on Dec. 16, 2023. But, UFC matchmakers already have more than enough champions to fill out that card: Leon Edwards is defending his Welterweight belt against Colby Covington and Alexandre Pantoja’s Flyweight tile is on the line against Brandon Royval.
In a new episode of The Joe Rogan Experience, O’Malley explained how talks with the promotion shook out.
“I really, really did truly want to fight in December,” O’Malley said (via MMA Fighting). “Like when I called out Chito [Marlon Vera] for December. But, I talked to UFC and they kind of already had [plans]. They were trying to get Colby [Covington] and Leon [Edwards] together.”
O’Malley was told he’s too big of a name to get stuck as co-main event to champions in a higher weight class.
“They want me to main event my own show, which I think is f—ing dope,” he said. “I’m down with that.”
UFC CEO, Dana White, recently declared Sean O’Malley vs. Aljamain Sterling the biggest Bantamweight title fight in the history of the company. When you draw that many numbers on your own, there’s little reason to stack the card further. That’s a good position to be in, but it sort of precludes him from participating in a historic event coming up in early 2024.
“I think UFC 300 is in April,” O’Malley revealed. “That would be a sweet card to be on. But again, they’re not going [to want me as main event].
“I’m going to guess [I’ll fight] before that, before UFC 300,” O’Malley added.
O’Malley still doesn’t know who UFC will put forward as his first title defense, but he’s hopeful it will be Marlon “Chito” Vera. With Aljamain Sterling and Merab Dvalishvili angling for their own shots, it’s not a sure thing.
“I’m really hoping [the UFC] f—in’ just say ‘Let’s f—ing do it,’” O’Malley said.
For the latest UFC 296 fight card click here.
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