Sean O’Malley is toying with the idea of being the official backup fighter for the upcoming UFC bantamweight title fight.
There is a UFC bantamweight title fight on the books for later this year. After a long while of uncertainty, it is now presumed that champion Aljamain Sterling will be returning to the cage on May 6 to face former champion Henry Cejudo. This fight has been rumored for a while now with the date being pushed back over and over again. It seems that this landing spot, UFC 288 is the real deal and both men involved are moving forwards with their camps.
The reason for the pushback was mainly on Sterling’s side. He has been dealing with some lingering issues with his bicep and needed to be sure that he was able to compete before setting a date. As is the case with many title fights, the UFC may be looking to hire a backup fighter for this one. If that is the case, perhaps Sean O’Malley would be interested.
Sean O’Malley explains what could stop him from being the backup fighter for UFC 288
Sean O’Malley is the current number-one contender in the UFC. He recently defeated Petr Yan and was thrust into title contention talks. However, when the UFC decided to allow Cejudo to return from retirement right into a title fight, O’Malley was forced to wait his turn. Now He is toying with the idea of being a fill-in but has some reservations.
“This leaves me in a little position,” he said on YouTube.” You know, do I want to be back a fighter? I couldn’t be technically if I wanted to be for this amount of money. Do I need that amount of money? Not really. I’m rich as f–k, weird flex, I’m kidding, but it’s just like, weight cuts are hard dude. They’re very I mean, I’m almost thinking right now we’re so far out it’s still tricky to say. I might just do a full fight camp, pretty much spar, diet, get to fight week, and then decide.”
O’Malley wants the deal to be sweet enough to sign on to be the official backup. If he puts himself in that role he will need to cut weight and weigh in the day before the fight. He will then have the chance to step in if anything should happen to either man last minute. The plus side would be that this would immediately put him in his very first UFC title fight. The downside would be the grueling preparations that would need to be done.
O’Malley said he is looking for the price to be right in order for him to take the time and energy needed to fill this role. He also mentioned Sterling’s injuries and feels that he might get that call either way, so why not be ready? Either way, the decision has not yet been made.