Sean O’Malley is happy to keep fighting unranked opposition.
O’Malley is one of the most exciting and hyped up prospects in the UFC bantamweight division, going 5-1 with the promotion overall so far.
However, he has faced criticism for not facing high-level opposition which has seen him remain unranked and not fighting the very best in the shark tank that is the 135-pound division.
His latest opponent was the short-notice debutant Kris Moutinho at UFC 264 last month, but prior to that, he was initially set to face Louis Smolka. Before that, he TKO’d the no-longer-ranked Thomas Almeida who was well past his best.
O’Malley: I’m Going To Fight The Lower-Ranked Dude For The Same Pay
And despite rumors of a fight with Frankie Edgar, it looks like O’Malley will continue fighting unranked opponents — until his pay changes.
“Next fight, a lot of people want me to fight someone ranked,” O’Malley said on his podcast (via MMA Junkie). “They wanted me to fight someone ranked last fight. I was supposed to fight Louis Smolka (at UFC 264). For me, I have a contract to fight a certain amount of fights, and I’m gonna get paid a certain amount of money whether I fight Louis Smolka, the dude I was supposed to fight, or I fight Petr Yan, the No. 1 bantamweight in the UFC. I get paid the same. I’m gonna fight this dude (who is lower). And I’m going to fight this dude on a Conor McGregor pay-per-view.
“Chael Sonnen always says fight the worst dude on the highest part of the card. A lot of bantamweights, and just people in the UFC, they definitely hate, and it comes from jealousy. I’m getting way more eye balls than them. I perform in there. You can go and watch some of these guys perform, and you literally pick up your phone, start surfing Instagram, you just don’t give a f*ck what they’re doing.”
While he will undoubtedly receive criticism for this, O’Malley does make a good point. Why face a harder fight if you can take an easier one and get paid the same?