“Sugar” Sean O’Malley banked his second straight viral knockout when he appeared on Dan White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series in August and scored a brutal overhand right finish against Alfred Khashakyan.
After posting a video of a post-fight celebratory blunt with Snoop Dogg, the colorful MMA Lab proponent’s stock rose exponentially.
O’Malley set to make his UFC debut on Friday night against Terrion Ware, in what he believes will be his first steps in a “sweet, sweet UFC career.” Despite being given co-main event privileges for the TUF Finale, the brash debutant believes he should have been given a main event slot.
“I think I should have been the main event of this card,” O’Malley told MMAFighting.com.
“I think that it would have been the perfect spot for me. Co-main event is pretty sweet, but I would’ve rather been the main event. I do this will all work out perfectly, though.”
As far as O’Malley is concerned, Ware is the perfect opponent for him to showcase his skills against, given that his strength lies in his striking acumen.
“He’s a perfect opponent. They sent me his name, I didn’t know who he was, but then me and my buddy looked him up and we saw him as the perfect opponent,” he explained.
“He’s a boxer, he likes to strike and I think he’s going to be a little flat footed and slow. I think that will allow me to really showcase my skillset and I think it’s going to result in a really good performance.”
The unbeaten Phoenix native thinks he’s capable of taking two bonuses home with him on top of his first UFC check.
“The show and win money is okay, but I’m looking for that win bonus. I’m trying to get a double bonus – ‘Fight of the Night’ and ‘Performance of the Night’. I want to get both of those, that would make it worth his while,” he said.
O’Malley has watched his following soar to new heights since his appearance on DWTNCS, but it’s nothing he didn’t expect based on his successful 2017 having banked three knockout wins so far.
“I knew I would blow up if I put on the type of performance I know that I’m capable of and that’s exactly what happened. My fight before that also went viral with that spinning wheel kick knockout, so I knew with back-to-back viral knockouts that I was going to blow up.”
Although he has cultivated a reputation for spectacular finishes, the 23-year-old highlighted that he makes no concentrated effort to put on flashy showings, but the manner in which he fights always guarantees fireworks.
“I don’t feel pressure at all because that’s just how I fight,” said O’Malley.
“I don’t feel like I have to do anything special, I don’t go in trying to have a good fight. That’s just my style and how I do. There’s no effort on my part to make the performance spectacular, that’s just what happens.”
O’Malley has every confidence that he will make it four knockouts in four outings in 2017, and he insists that he wants to maintain a similar run of activity next year.
Despite Ware never being finished via strikes, O’Malley is still confident he can finish the contest inside the first round on Saturday night.
“Terrion is super tough, he’s had over 20 fights and he’s never lost by strikes. That being said, I still think I’m going to go out there and knock him out in the first round,” he said.
“I don’t think he’s going to be able my hands and my kicks. Everything will come together and he will drop.”