Sean O’Malley and Dominick Cruz are the only two competitors in the top ten bantamweights in the UFC who do not currently have a scheduled opponent for their upcoming fight. The No. 1 ranked bantamweight was called out by Umar Nurmagomedov, who said he was too preoccupied with his hair to engage in combat. The No. 11-ranked bantamweight made the following statement in a tweet he shared:
“The only fighter who doesn’t have a fight, according to Sean Shelby, is too busy going to the beauty parlour to change his hair colour. Sean Shelby told us today that many competitors have changed their phone numbers and email addresses because they got tired of hearing my name, @SugaSeanMMA. I’ll be there, Dana White.”
Ali Abdelaziz, the manager of Umar Nurmagomedov, was accused by fans of tweeting from his account, but he swiftly provided a selfie to show that it was actually him. The top 10 fighters in the bantamweight division have showed a reluctance to take on the undefeated Russian bantamweight, who has never lost in his professional career.
At the first event of 2023, UFC Fight Night 217, “Young Eagle” triumphed over Raoni Barcelos. While Petr Yan was victorious over Sean O’Malley in a contentious split decision at UFC 280 in October 2022, O’Malley hasn’t fought since. The outcome of the speculated title bout between Aljamain Sterling and Henry Cejudo appears to be what “Sugar” is waiting for.
Daniel Cormier shares prediction for Sean O’Malley’s championship aspirations
Sean O’Malley recently disclosed that he had extended his contract with the UFC by eight fights. UFC Hall of Famer Daniel Cormier predicted that the top-ranked bantamweight will not win a title in the first three fights left on his contract during a part titled “Tap In or Tap Out” on his podcast DC & RC. He said:
“The time limit causes me to tap out. Just extremely swift. It won’t take you very long to become a champion with three more fights. Now I see why he is No. 1. This is why we think it might occur, although he is ranked first because he defeated Petr Yan. Many people believed that he lost the Yan battle when he dropped from 10 to one.”
O’Malley being a UFC champion in the future is not surprising, according to Cormier, although he does anticipate it to happen in his next three fights. It’s extremely probable that “Sugar” does end up becoming a champion because it seems like he’s destined to compete for the title in his subsequent battle. But if he fails, it will probably take him more than two fights to get back into the competitive bantamweight title picture.
Watch Daniel Cormier’s criticism of Sean O’Malley starting at 30:55 in the video below: