In the fast-paced world of UFC, Sean O’Malley, the newly crowned bantamweight champion, is wasting no time in looking ahead to his first title defense. In a recent interview on The MMA Hour, O’Malley shared his eagerness to step back into the octagon, but not without addressing the twists and turns his journey has taken, including a surprising revelation about a past fight.
O’Malley’s path to the championship was not without hurdles. Six weeks prior to his spectacular title-winning knockout of Aljamain Sterling at UFC 292, he suffered a rib injury that left him unable to grapple. But he’s determined to put his newly acquired belt on the line before the year’s end, as long as his hand injury heals up. In his own words, “The sooner, the better for me.”
When it comes to potential opponents for his first title defense, O’Malley has a clear favorite in mind: Marlon “Chito” Vera. The reason? It’s not just because Vera had a solid performance against Pedro Munhoz on the same UFC 292 card. It’s because O’Malley wants big fights, and in his eyes, a rematch with “Chito” is the biggest one on the horizon.
Their history adds an intriguing layer to this potential rematch. O’Malley and Vera clashed in August 2020 at UFC 252, with Vera securing a first-round TKO victory. However, O’Malley has playfully claimed to have won that bout over the years, even considering it part of his undefeated record. When asked about any personal motivation for a rematch, O’Malley shrugged it off, saying, “Not at all. I never lost sleep over this fight. I’ve actually been playing chess for a long time. I lost that fight on purpose, just so I could go out there and knock out ‘Aljo’ and have that [Vera rematch] be my biggest fight. Rematch.”
Vera, on the other hand, seems more than willing to oblige with a December rematch. He’s confident in his ability to defeat O’Malley once again, but O’Malley isn’t buying into it, stating, “He ain’t going to get no f****** title shot any other way. He’s got to try to get it while he can. He definitely didn’t earn it, you know?”
As O’Malley looks ahead to his first title defense, he’s also considering the potential slot on the fight card. While he’s open to being the co-headliner, he believes that only the UFC’s top stars like Israel Adesanya and Conor McGregor could potentially headline over him. O’Malley’s confidence in his ability to draw fans and put on a show shines through as he envisions his next fight.
In the world of UFC, the drama, rivalries, and unexpected turns of fate make for captivating storylines, and Sean O’Malley’s journey to his first title defense promises to be no different. Whether it’s a rematch with Chito Vera or a showdown with another formidable opponent, fight fans are eagerly awaiting the next chapter in the “Suga” Sean O’Malley saga.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about chito vera rematch
Q: Who is Sean O’Malley?
A: Sean O’Malley is a UFC bantamweight fighter and the newly crowned bantamweight champion.
Q: What is the significance of Sean O’Malley’s recent win at UFC 292?
Q: Why did Sean O’Malley have to wait six weeks before grappling again after his title-winning fight?
A: Sean O’Malley suffered a rib injury six weeks before his title-winning knockout of Aljamain Sterling, which temporarily prevented him from grappling.
Q: Who does Sean O’Malley want to face in his first title defense?
A: Sean O’Malley has expressed a desire to face Marlon “Chito” Vera in his first title defense. This stems from their history, as Vera is the only fighter to have defeated O’Malley in his professional MMA career.
Q: What is the backstory of O’Malley’s previous fight with Chito Vera?
A: O’Malley and Vera previously fought in August 2020 at UFC 252, where Vera secured a first-round TKO victory. O’Malley, however, has humorously claimed to have won that fight, considering it part of his undefeated record.
Q: How does Sean O’Malley feel about the potential rematch with Chito Vera?
A: Sean O’Malley doesn’t view the potential rematch with Chito Vera as a personal vendetta. He has stated that he lost the previous fight on purpose to set up a bigger rematch, emphasizing his desire for significant fights in his career.
Q: Is Sean O’Malley open to being the co-headliner in his next fight?
A: Yes, Sean O’Malley is open to being the co-headliner in his next fight, but he believes that only the UFC’s top stars like Israel Adesanya and Conor McGregor could potentially headline over him. He is confident in his ability to draw fans and put on a show.