Sean O’Malley Aims to Defeat Dangerous Ilia Topuria

UFC bantamweight champion Sean O’Malley has expressed his desire to fight top featherweight contender Ilia Topuria, should Topuria win the 145-pound title at UFC 298, as part of O’Malley’s plan to become a two-division champion.

Sean O’Malley‘s got a plan. He’s aiming to beat the best to claim the top spot.

Ilia Topuria, a top featherweight contender, is on his radar. Topuria, also known as “El Matador,” is set to challenge Alexander Volkanovski for the 145-pound title at UFC 298 on Feb. 17. If victorious, Topuria’s got a few options, including O’Malley.

O’Malley, the current UFC bantamweight champion, has expressed interest in a future fight with Topuria. He’s thrown some jabs at Topuria, but he’s also got a lot of respect for him. After all, Topuria could soon be the new king of the featherweight division.

“I want to become champ-champ,” O’Malley shared on the MightyCast podcast. He’s got a particular vision for Topuria: “Ilia just has that face that I would love to knee him right up the middle and break his little nose.” He’s planning to head to California to watch the fight between Ilia and Volk. He’s expecting it to be a thrilling match.

O’Malley rates Topuria highly. He considers him one of the most skilled fighters he’s ever watched. “Ilia is dangerous. He’s one of the best all-around martial artists, he’s so skilled,” O’Malley said. But he’s also confident he could knock Topuria out.

Topuria has proven his worth since his UFC debut in 2020. The 27-year-old has a 6-0 record inside the octagon, with four fights not lasting past the second round. In his most recent fight, he showcased his striking prowess over five rounds to win a decision over Josh Emmett.

O’Malley’s not shy about praising Topuria’s skills. But he’s also clear about his intentions: he plans to defeat Topuria and add another win to his impressive record.

O’Malley’s got a reputation for smoking and partying. But he’s quick to point out that he’s more focused than people realize. “I don’t think there’s very many people that are dialed as I am,” he said. He’s considering showing more of his serious side as he chases greatness.

“I want to be with the greatest of all-time. I want to defend this belt. I want to go knock out Ilia if he wins,” O’Malley said. He’s determined to beat the fighters others think he can’t. He’s 29 and believes he’s got a good few years left in his career. He’s been chasing greatness since he started, but he feels his ‘Sugar’ brand might make people think he’s not as serious as he is.

Before O’Malley can take on Topuria, he’s got a fight to win at UFC 299. He’s defending his bantamweight title against Marlon “Chito” Vera, the only fighter who’s ever defeated him.

If he wins, O’Malley’s got his sights set on a fight with Topuria in Las Vegas. He’s got a specific venue in mind: the state-of-the-art Sphere arena.

“I want The Sphere in Vegas,” O’Malley said. He’s hoping for a fight with Ilia in September, on Mexican Independence Day. But first, he’s got to get past Chito, a tough and durable opponent from Ecuador.


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