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Video: Sideline explodes after UFC champ Sean O’Malley returns to Montana for Grizzlies comeback win over Ferris State


No. 12 Montana Grizzlies scored a comeback victory to defeat Ferris State Bulldogs 17-10 at Washington-Grizzly Stadium on Saturday at the campus of the University of Montana in Missoula, Montana. But the post-game headlines had to make room for UFC bantamweight champion Sean O’Malley, who was born in Helena, a little under two hours (by car) from Missoula.

“Suga” had the place fired up from the jump:

O’Malley, 28, captured the bantamweight title by stopping Aljamain Sterling in the UFC 292 main event last month in Boston. The promotion is likely to make a decision on his first title defense — which is expected to come against Merab Dvalishvili or Marlon Vera — at some point over the next few weeks.

“I think being from Montana was a huge role,” O’Malley previously told Montana Sports. “I was knocking people out at an early age at 16, 17, 18. I was all in Montana fighting and there was times I fought three times in a month so being from Montana was a massive part of my career. I gained a ton of confidence down there, gained a ton of experience. I had 14 amateur fights and I moved to the (MMA) Lab and people were trying to get their second amateur fight and I had so much experience which definitely gave me a huge advantage. It kind of molded who I was being from Helena, Montana. Small town. It was a good place to grow up.”

As of this writing, the UFC 296 pay-per-view (PPV) card does not yet have a main or co-main event, so “Suga” could slide into one of those two openings, or simply wait until early 2024 to make his Octagon return. Until then, don’t be surprised to see O’Malley popping up in all different places to capitalize on his UFC stardom and make “so much money.”

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