Sean O’Malley reacted to the critics of his matchmaking, saying “people are mad. I don’t know what to do, I don’t know what to tell them.”
O’Malley was set to fight Louis Smolka in the main card opener at this Saturday’s UFC 264 pay-per-view event, but that fight was scratched when Smolka was forced off the card due to a staph infection. In his place will be UFC newcomer Kris Moutinho, who is stepping up on short notice to fight O’Malley. When this fight was announced, many fans were scratching their heads wondering why the UFC wasn’t able to get someone more established to fight O’Malley. “Suga” hears the critics, and speaking to The Schmo, he explained why fans need to stop going after him because they question the matchmaking.
“I’m ready to hear the ‘I’m not fighting a ranked opponent,’. It’s like, okay, they offered me Louis Smolka, he’s not ranked. People were kind of upset with the opponent but they were like, ‘Eh, whatever.’ He pulls out. They say, ‘Oh you didn’t pick a ranked opponent for a replacement.’ I got offered zero, I’ve never been offered a ranked opponent ever,” O’Malley said (via MMAFighting.com). “I’ve never fought a ranked opponent – I think (Marlon Vera) Chito when he was 15 or something. Never fought ranked, I’m not ranked. People are mad. I don’t know what to do, I don’t know what to tell them.”
According to O’Malley, he was sent a list of potential opponents and said yes to Ricky Simon, who is a very good and established fighter on the UFC roster. However, Simon was not able to make 135lbs on short notice, so O’Malley declined the fight, and understandably so. Instead, O’Malley will now fight Moutinho at 135lbs. It might not be the fight that the fans want to see, but given the circumstances, it’s hard to blame O’Malley for this one.
What do you think of the matchmaking for Sean O’Malley in the UFC?