Sean O’Malley has never been afraid to speak his mind. O’Malley will be featured on the UFC 280 card in Abu Dhabi alongside former UFC Champion Petr Yan while the card will be headlined by the anticipated match between Islam Makhachev and Charles Oliveira.
O’Malley has been shading Makhachev due to the fact that he’s not really had an opportunity to shine in the octagon until now.
“Honestly, I haven’t watched a ton of Islam, more of a little bit of his recent stuff, but it’s crazy how hyped-up he is, literally because Khabib says how good he is. ” O’Malley told Helen Yee.
“We’re not super hyped because of all the crazy performances he’s had, it’s more so just because Khabib thinks this guy’s the best in the world. I would love to see Charles go out there and get the job done.”
Makhachev has been streamlined to the title shot thanks to UFC’s lucrative partnership with Abu Dhabi in addition to the fact that Oliveira had finished all his previous opponents.
It was initially believed that Makhachev would have to test himself first against Beniel Dariush in order to get a title shot but after Dariush had hurt his foot, cancelling their match it was a whole new ball game.
Now, despite the fact that Dariush is recovered, Islam will be facing off against the (stripped) lightweight champion in Abu Dhabi. Despite the fact that Oliveira was initially reluctant to defend his title in Abu Dhabi (due to perceived judging bias) he was strong-armed into it when UFC threatened to put in Michael Chandler instead.
Makhachev’s hardest opponent to date was Dan Hooker which he faced back in October of last year at UFC 267. At the time, Hooker was on the number 9 spot. With Khabib Nurmagomedov’s help, Makhachev managed to set a perfect kimura lock and submitted Hooker.
— Fight Highlights (@Dj_Atmos) September 7, 2019