Sean O’Malley gained fame with his MMA debut in 2015 under Intense Championship Fighting promotion in his native Montana, USA. The American UFC fighter won his first five fights with ICF and a couple of fights with other promotions when he got an invite to Dana White’s Contender Series. Here, the first timer was introduced to the MMA world in a big way with a stunning first-round knockout of his opponent Alfred Khashakyan. The aspiring fighter’s single performance earned him a contract with the UFC. Soon, he made his UFC debut in December 2017 against Terrion Ware on The Ultimate Fighter 26 Finale. Sean O’Malley won the fight via unanimous decision and went on to win his next fight in March 2018. The American fighter didn’t return to the octagon for two years while he recovered from hip surgery and served out a pair of suspensions for doping violations, which is something we discuss down below.
Sean O’ Malley: 13 Quick Facts
What ethnicity is Sean O’ Malley?
The MMA fighter born on 24 October 1994, has a grandmother who is Irish.
He got suspended from school:
O’Malley saw the world in black and white and didn’t understand why he needed to fill his head with all of these things he’d forget the minute he walked out of the door.
The future MMA fighter dropped out of high school midway through his sophomore year because he was tired of wasting his time. The young athlete then went to what he called “sort of a boot camp” in order to obtain a GED, but was expelled after getting into a fight and enrolled in an “alternative high school.”
“At that time, in my mind, I thought, ‘This is pointless. I don’t like what we’re learning.’ I thought it was a waste of time and thought I should have been doing something else.”
That something else was fighting, and he’s turned into a sensation in an amazingly short period of time.
His friend introduced him to fighting, soon he was instantly hooked and never wanted to do anything else:
The future UFC fighter was then on vacation in Utah with his family when he was 15 or 16 when a friend from Helena called.
“He said, ‘Hey, you want to go to a fighting gym?’ and I said, ‘Yeah, sure,’ even though I didn’t know anything about fighting,” O’Malley said. “But I loved it and I never stopped going.”
He had no clue, though, what to do let alone the difference between an orthodox stance and a southpaw stance, and he didn’t have any concept of footwork. So, a young Sean did what felt right, and found that it worked, so he kept doing it.
And though he wasn’t one for school work, Sean studied something else about himself: Fighting taught him lessons he would never learn in a classroom.
“If I wasn’t fighting, I have no idea what I’d be doing,” he admits. “But just the fact that I learned how to fight and I learned what it takes to get better and improve, I’ve realized that if it turned out I couldn’t fight, I know now that I could get good at something else and I’d be able to make a career out of something else. Fighting taught me that, not school.
“Taking the fighting road, that’s where I’ve learned the most. I learned to eat healthy. I learned how to treat my body right. I’ve learned how to do all these things to just become a better person, so there’s no doubt that fighting helped me more than school ever did.”
He admires the great boxer Roy Jones, primarily for Jones’ unpredictability:
Roy Jones is considered by many to be one of the best boxers of all time, pound for pound, and left his mark in the sport’s history when he won the WBA heavyweight title in 2003, becoming the first former middleweight champion to win a heavyweight title in 106 years. In 1999 he became the undisputed light heavyweight champion by unifying the WBA, WBC, and IBF titles. During his prime, Jones was known for possessing exceptional hand speed, athleticism, movement and reflexes.
As of February 2018, Jones holds the record for the most wins in unified light heavyweight title bouts in boxing history, at twelve.
Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series:
A professional competitor since 2013, O’Malley was featured on the promo, winning by knockout.
Sean O’Malley’s Foot:
By August 2020, Sean O’Malley’s matchup with Marlon Vera was the co-main event. The star’s status has been skyrocketing to the top of the UFC bantamweight division with an undefeated 12-0 record and one highlight-reel knockout after another. But it all came crashing down with a single misstep.
O’Malley endured a serious injury to his right foot deep into the first round and was never the same after. Vera, recognizing the injury, pounced on his wounded opponent, and referee Herb Dean intervened, stopping the fight with just a few seconds remaining in the round.
In 2018, in Sean O’Malley’s second fight at UFC 222, saw him face Andre Soukhamthath. He dominated the first couple of rounds. Then, in the third round, The Glendale, Arizona-based fighter suffered an injury to his right foot.
Realizing O’Malley was noticeably limping and trying to avoid putting any weight on the leg, Soukhamthath attacked, specifically going after the injured leg. For two minutes, O’Malley fought back against the attack and held on to win the unanimous decision.
After the fight, Sean O’Malley spoke to MMA Fighting about the injury.
“They said it wasn’t broken, but they said I’ve got a previous fracture in there from before the fight, so I’m gonna figure out what’s wrong with it. It’s hurt pretty much nonstop, so we’ll see. I didn’t (know it was previously fractured). Every fight I’m in I throw a lot of kicks. I land with my feet a lot. I’ve had a lot of foot issues because of that. I’ve had a lot of foot injuries so I wasn’t surprised.”
“It was a super weird feeling. I couldn’t feel my whole foot when I put it on the ground. Every time I put pressure on it, it wasn’t there — it was super weird. It sucked.”
When Sean O’Malley stepped into the ring against Marlon Vera on Saturday night, no one watching was thinking about the foot injury of 2018. In 2018, his foot was the second topic, him winning was the first so most fans were envisioning another spectacular knockout
including his most recent detonation of Eddie Wineland in the first round of their fight at UFC 250 back in June 2020.
The opening round started off well for O’Malley and included several kicks to Vera’s body. Then, with just under three minutes remaining in the first round, he stumbled awkwardly on his right foot.
A few seconds later, another more pronounced stumble was caught by the cameras. Both of the stumbles appeared to be similar to what O’Malley had described in 2018 when he “couldn’t feel my whole foot.”
With just over 30 seconds remaining in the first and the foot obviously bothering him, Sean O’Malley fell down. Vera capitalized, throwing a flurry of elbows and punches before referee Herb Dean intervened and stopped the fight.
Following the fight, Megan Olivi briefly caught up with O’Malley before he left to receive medical treatment. She said in the post-fight commentary that O’Malley indicated it was the same injury he had in 2018.
While O’Malley has been quiet on the injury since Saturday’s fight, his comments in 2018 don’t bode well for his future. Sean O’Malley’s future in the UFC and MMA remains uncertain.
7. Together with his friend and head coach, Tim Welch, O’Malley is a co-host of their own podcast, The Timbo Sugarshow:
Tim Welch and Sugar Sean O’Malley talk about getting better and improving in every way possible, healthy eating, healthy living, work ethic, mindset, mushrooms, marijuana, caffeine, fighting, cultural conditioning, ego, life, book reviews, with their own taste of humor.
Sean O’Malley has been an endorsed athlete of prominent combat sports brand, Sanabul, since 2017:
The fighter said:
“I LOVE WORKING WITH SANABUL TO CREATE SUCH UNIQUE PRODUCTS AND THIS IS JUST THE BEGINNING OF SOMETHING VERY SPECIAL WITH MANY MORE COLLECTIONS TO COME”
He has a colourful tattoo inked on his chest:
In total, he has 14 tattoos.
O’Malley is an advocate for legalizing marijuana:
When he was a 22-year-old fighter, Sean had a friendly encounter with Snoop Dogg that resulted in the two men sharing a joint.
Following a knockout victory over Alfred Khashakyan during Dana White’s Tuesday Night Conternder Series, O’Malley said on The MMA Hour podcast with Ariel Helwani that Snoop Dogg asked to meet him, via MMA Fighting’s Danny Segura:
“Right when I walked into his trailer, he handed me a joint and I was pumped. It felt like a movie because I walked into his trailer and he’s got his bodyguards, he’s got a couple of other people in there, and there was like three joints going around.
“I was puffin’ and passin’, trying to keep up, and they had a TV in there playing highlights of my fight, so were watching that and smoking, it was so much fun. It was only like 20 or 30 minutes, but it was a good time and a memory forever.”
Suffice to say that O’Malley is a big proponent of marijuana – both medical and recreational and thinks it’s ridiculous that UFC fighters like Luis Pena and Tim Elliott were just hit with suspensions after testing positive for weed.
“It’s ridiculous that they get suspended for it. It’s embarrassing that it’s even a rule. We’re in 2020.”
O’Malley says he knows the rules will eventually change — “it’s got to” — but until then, he’s being smart about his own THC usage saying: “For me, I’ve gotta diet, I gotta not be snacking at night so I gotta quit anyway. I can’t fight the munchies, they always win.”
His daughter, Elena, was born last year with longtime girlfriend Danya:
Sean O’Malley is unmarried but not single. He is dating a hairstylist, Danya. Sean O’Malley is very open about the fact he’s in an open relationship and has been for a while. One magazine asked the 25-year-old if the couple brings in other people to celebrate after a big UFC victory and he told us he’s saving the big group bash for when he becomes the champ.
“Yeah, that’s after a title fight win. That will happen.”
Sean O’Malley usually competes in the Bantamweight division of ultimate fighting championships. He has been featured on Dana white’s Tuesday night contender series. People often call him by his nickname, Sugar. He received his training under the guidance of a coach named John Crouch. He fought his first five fights in his native town, Montana. He in his early career was also awarded a UFC contract.
He made his debut on 1 December 2017 against Terrion Ware and won the fight. His next fight was with Andre Soukhamthath. During the fight, he injured his foot. But he on the other side also earned the fight of the night bonus. He received a setback in his career due to some health issues which wasn’t limited to his foot injury. He had his hip surgery on 25 October. Later on, he tested positive for Ostarine and consequently was suspended for six months by NSAC.
He made his comeback with a scheduled fight with Marlon Vera on 6 July 2019. But this did not take place due to his failed test for ostarine. He was again suspended by USADA. Finally, on 7 March 2020, he made his comeback with a fight against Jose Alberto Quinonez and he won the fight. Along with the fight, he also earned the performance of the night award. O’ Malley also competed as a team member of UFC on 12 December 2019 at Quintet.
Sean O’Malley stands at a height of 1.8 m i.e. 5 feet and 11 inches tall. He has a body weight of 135 lb s i.e. 61 kg. He has an athletic body build. He has a reach of 72 inches. He has brown eyes and dark brown hair. He has several tattoos on his body.