‘He Has Got a Big Demand’- Chael Sonnen Defends Sean O’Malley for Fighting Unranked Opponents

Published 08/18/2021, 1:33 AM EDT
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – MARCH 27: Sean O’Malley reacts after his knockout victory over Thomas Almeida of Brazil in their bantamweight fight during the UFC 260 event at UFC APEX on March 27, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC)


Sean O’Malley is one of the most exciting prospects at 135-pounds. ‘Sugar’, who burst onto the scene on Dana White’s Contender Series, has kept the hype alive by securing one jaw-dropping knockout win after another. Despite his performances and his recent wins, O’Malley is unranked and has not fought a highly ranked fighter yet either. 

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‘Sugar’ has received a lot of criticism for fighting lesser-known names in the sport. He recently shared his thoughts as to why he does that knowingly. In the recent installment of ‘The Chael Sonnen Show’, Sonnen revealed why he thinks O’Malley has the right approach to the fight game. 

He said, “Look, not for nothing, Sean O’Malley is doing it right. All the guys that have called him out, all have one thing in common. They are not in the popularity level, they are not in the recognizable face level, Sean is. Sean is always fighting main card or better. He is only going to be fighting main card or better. He has got a big demand.”

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Sonnen continued, “The most traditional way to get where you want in the sport, which is a title opportunity, is to go out and beat a whole bunch of guys. That is going to take you a whole bunch of years of never stubbing your toe…. A more untraditional way but happens almost as commonly is to be wildly popular.”

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Sean O’Malley makes an eye-opening revelation about his contract 

In a recent appearance on a podcast, O’Malley shared why he does not prefer fighting ranked fighters. ‘Sugar’ stated that as per his contract with the UFC, he would get paid the same amount of money regardless of who he fought. Be it the bantamweight champion on an unranked fighter making his UFC debut. 

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Therefore, O’Malley said he prefers taking on the easiest possible fight on the biggest possible fight card. Which is exactly what he did the last time he stepped into a UFC octagon. ‘Sugar’ faced Kris Moutinho, making his UFC debut on short notice. The fight took place on the main card of the second most successful PPV event in UFC history. 

What do you make of Sean O’Malley’s approach to the fight game? Let us know in the comments below!

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Kevin Binoy

1178 articles

Kevin Binoy is an MMA author at EssentiallySports. He earned a Bachelor's degree from Fergusson College and has been covering sports professionally for over two years. Besides working with the MMA writing team, Kevin is a core member of the organization's web stories team and is responsible for delivering engaging MMA web stories.

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