Rising UFC bantamweight contender "Suga" Sean O'Malley opened up about his future with the promotion.
O'Malley spoke with Ariel Helwani on the latest edition of The MMA Hour and talked about his contract status with the UFC, as well as what happened with the rumored matchup between him and former UFC lightweight champion Frankie Edgar at UFC 268 on November 6 at Madison Square Garden in New York City. He said it simply just came down to scheduling, as he was hoping to fight Edgar a month later in Las Vegas, Nevada.
"100 percent it was about the date," O'Malley told Helwani (h/t MMA Fighting). “At the end of the day, the UFC picks. If they offer me Frankie, like I said, I would love to fight Frankie. Frankie is a top-10 guy I think and he’s a big-name guy. I wouldn’t have said no, ‘No, I don’t want to fight him because I want to get paid more to fight him.’ I said, ‘Yeah, I’ll fight Frankie on Dec. 11th in Vegas.’ I would’ve loved for that fight. That’s the fight I was hoping for and that’s the matchup I wanted. I’ll also fight Dominick Cruz on Dec. 11th.”
He continued on to update the status of his current contract negotiations with the UFC, saying he's got three fights left on his deal and that he believes it's time for the two sides to discuss a new contract that fits with more how O'Malley sees his worth. He did reiterate though, he does plan on staying with the promotion but doesn't want to close the door on potential opportunities outside of re-signing with them.
"I think it's time now," O'Malley said. "I could probably renegotiate a contract right now with the UFC, but then I don’t get offers from other places. And I’m not necessarily looking to leave, I’m not necessarily looking to go other places, but we’ll see what other opportunities present themselves, I have three more fights on my contract and we'll see where it goes. I'm just going with the flow Ariel. I really do plan on staying with the UFC. I think I belong in the UFC. But also if I’m going to get offered twice as much money to go do something else — I love boxing. We’ll see where it goes. Like I said, I love the UFC, they’ve been nothing but great to me. And I think after this contract is up, I don’t think they’ll have an issue paying me what I think I deserve. But we might be on a completely different mindset there. They might think I’m not worth half a million or whatever the number is. I’ve been on like five consecutive pay-per-views and you can't tell me UFC 264 wasn't The Suga Show."