Thursday, April 18

Sean O’Malley Denies Ducking Merab Dvalishvili After Ilia Topuria Callout

Highlights

  • Merab Dvalishvili eyes UFC bantamweight fight with Sean O’Malley, who initially wanted Ilia Topuria bout.
  • Fan pressure leads O’Malley to agree to face Dvalishvili post-Vera match at UFC 299.
  • Confident in his abilities, O’Malley promises dominant performance, predicting knockout victory.



Merab Dvalishvili continued his impressive run with a decisive victory over Henry Cejudo at UFC 298, extending his winning streak to 10. Following his dominant performance, Dvalishvili set his sights on a future fight with UFC bantamweight champion Sean O’Malley, who was present cageside. However, the reigning bantamweight champion seemed uninterested, expressing his desire to face newly crowned featherweight champion Ilia Topuria after his upcoming bout against Marlon “Chito” Vera at UFC 299.

While Sean O’Malley envisioned a super-fight with Topuria, a significant portion of the MMA community desires a different matchup. Many fans are advocating for O’Malley to face #1 bantamweight contender Merab Dvalishvili, assuming he secures victory in his upcoming title defense against Vera. O’Malley has reversed course and gave in to fan pressure.


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O’Malley said on his YouTube channel that he is not ducking Dvalishvili and explained his desire to fight Topuria.

“Just watched Henry vs. Merab for the first time, rewatched it on TV. Let me start with this. Initially, I was calling for Ilia. I want the Ilia fight. I wanted that fight. It excites me, but I also thought the fans would get excited about it. Got a lot of pushback saying, you’re ducking Merab, Merab is next. So, Merab’s next. Let’s do Merab.”

Driven by the desire to avenge his teammate Aljamain Sterling’s recent title loss, Merab Dvalishvili is eager to challenge Sean O’Malley in the octagon. O’Malley, however, remains confident in his ability to dispatch Dvalishvili, citing his superior striking skills and comparing the potential matchup to his previous victory over Sterling.


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While O’Malley emphasizes his speed, precision, and overall technique, promising a more dominant performance, Dvalishvili seeks to prove his mettle and settle the score on behalf of his friend.

“I’m telling you guys, I knock Merab out,” O’Malley claimed. “I rewatched Henry vs. Aljo after I was there. And I told you guys, I’m knocking Aljo out. All you guys said, ‘No way, you’re not knocking Aljo out. He’s gonna take you down and kill you. Here we go again.

‘Suga’ went on to describe the no.1 contender as “sloppy” and said he will be “turning his nose straight” with a knockout punch.

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