Sean O’Malley announced on ESPN’s DC & RC that he’s fighting Petr Yan at UFC 280, which takes place Oct. 22 in Abu Dhabi.
MMA Fighting subsequently confirmed with a person with knowledge of the promotion’s plans that the fight has been verbally agreed upon, but contracts haven’t been issued.
Former UFC champion in two weight categories Daniel Cormier believes that the prospect of the bantamweight division Sean O’Malley agreed to fight with Petr Yan, as he considers the Russian a convenient opponent.
“Why did Sean take the fight at the moment? I think it’s because he thinks he has an advantage in certain aspects. Firstly, it is taller and longer. Secondly, Petr Yan is a boxer. O’Malley is also a boxer, so he probably thinks this is the most convenient fight for him in the top 5.
If you look at how other guys in the top of this division fight, it would be logical to assume that stylistically these are nightmarish fights for Sean O’Malley. And here we see such a difference in height – 10 centimeters, 12 centimeters in the span of the arms. So Sean probably thinks that if there is any guy at the top of this division, a fight with whom will be quite convenient, it’s Petr Yan,” Daniel Cormier said on the DC & RC show.
Sean O’Malley is currently 15-1 in his pro-MMA career. However, ‘No Mercy’ is undoubtedly a huge step up for the American, especially considering the fact that O’Malley has only faced one ranked opponent in his entire UFC career up until now.
The former champion, on the other hand, will be looking to catapult himself to yet another title fight by taking out the highly popular up-and-comer. The 29-year-old Russian is currently 16-3 in his pro-MMA career.
O’Malley opened up as a +375 underdog against the -500 favorite former champion for their UFC 280 clash.
What Sean O’Malley thinks about his upcoming fight with Petr Yan
In a recent interview with TheMacLife, firey bantamweight ‘Sugar’ Sean O’Malley said that he was ready for former champion Petr Yan, regardless of the fact that the American has not faced much top-level competition so far.
O’Malley stated that since his first scrap with a ranked opponent (Pedro Munhoz) ended in a no-contest, he is looking forward to getting inside the cage at the earliest.
“Everyone’s like holy s**t I can’t believe you’re fighting Petr Yan. For me it’s like I’ve been trying to fight Petr. So it’s crazy if you look at it considering the rankings, considering who he has beat, Aldo, Cory… like he’s beat some of the best guys in the world and I’ve got a no contest, my best win is a no contest over Pedro Munhoz. In that sense, it’s kind of a big deal but I’m ready for this.”
The No. 13 bantamweight further predicted that Petr Yan was going to be aggressive in their fight. O’Malley added that he didn’t think Yan liked him too much:
“I think he’s going to come forward be aggressive. He’s going to want to hit me you know. I dont think he likes me. He’s going to be emotionally involved in the fight.”
Watch Sean O’Malley’s interview with TheMacLife below: