Sean O’Malley is coming off a TKO win over UFC debutante Kris Moutinho at UFC 264. The win took him to 14-1 as a pro and followed a KO over Thomas Almeida in March. Since beating Moutinho, who was a late replacement for Louis Smolka, O’Malley has been candid in discussing his methods of selecting opponents.
He revealed that he wasn’t interested in fighting ranked fighters at this stage of his career, since his contract meant he was paid the same regardless if he fought Moutinho, Smolka or former UFC bantamweight champion Petr Yan.
After it was reported that O’Malley had turned down at UFC 268 against a then unnamed opponent, ‘Suga’ also claimed that UFC matchmaker Sean Shelby treated him “like a piece of shit.”
In a recent interview with The Schmo, O’Malley revealed why he turned down the bout at UFC 268 (which was to be against Frankie Edgar) as well as where he currently stands with Shelby.
“I said what I said on ‘The BrOMalley Show,’ I got into some trouble,” O’Malley said (ht MMA Junkie). “I had a conversation with Sean Shelby a couple days after in person, in Houston at the fights. We’re good now. He didn’t like what I said. I didn’t like what he said. I feel like I’m in a position where if you want me to fight in New York, and I don’t want to fight in New York, I’m not gonna fight in New York. I’m in that position, and I had that conversation, and we’re good now.”
O’Malley explained that his hesitance to fight in New York is because of “ridiculous” state taxes that would be levied against his purse.
“I got offered a fight in New York against Frankie, and I said if Frankie wants to get whooped, he can get whooped in Vegas in December, a month later. They want Frankie to fight in New York, so they gave him ‘Chito’. Getting the ‘Suga Show’ against Frankie would’ve been a great fight for me, but I’m not too worried about it.”
O’Malley added that he’s not been offered another fight since then, but he was eager to compete in Las Vegas in December. Though, he revealed, that was contingent on recovering from injuries to his hands suffered in the Moutinho fight.
As far as an opponent, O’Malley said he’d like to face Dominick Cruz, but he questioned whether that would come together.
“Who will it be? Dominick Cruz? Could be, I don’t know. If he wants to fight in December in Vegas, I would love to dance with him. I don’t think it will be Dominick, I don’t think he’ll take that fight. I don’t think that’s a fight that he wants. But if it is, then yeah, that would probably be next. If not, I don’t know, and to be honest, I don’t really care if it’s a top 10 guy, a top 15 guy, a bum on the street. I’m gonna get paid the same. Whoever I beat up, I’m getting paid the same. Don’t care.”