Slugfest Win by Sugar O’Malley UFC 280

Photo Credit: IG

This fight was straight up primal. Sugar O’Malley walked into the octagon with the demon of uncertainty riding him like a sadistic coachman. At 11th place in his class versus Petr Yan, who has been number 1 in the Bantamweight Division since April as well as holding the belt at one time, there was obviously a lot riding on this fight. The fact is that Yan is technically a better boxer. Another fact is that prior to the fight Petr was down 1-2 in his last 3 fights. This was a huge risk for Yan because of his place in the division. After all, Petr Yan intent on winning this fight in order to rematch Aljamain Sterling for the title he lost by DQ in March of 2021. Sean O’Malley stated Yan got bullied into fighting him by The UFC during pre-fight trash talk. While Yan had his aspirations to regain the title at stake, Sugar had a responsibility to cash that check that his mouth wrote prior to the fight. The first round was a wash in my opinion.

The first two rounds were more of a war of attrition on Yan’s part that really could’ve gone either way. Yan relied on heavy takedowns which definitely left Sugar spent. The third round knee to Yan’s right brow was enough to cause an eruption of blood that ended up covering O’Malley like war paint. Sugar O’Malley ended up on the ground at end of 3rd. He still had fight left in him and he won the respect of the judges by going the distance. O’Malley won by split decision. This was a very close fight and one that will be remembered. The final score for the three rounds was 29-28, 28-29, and 29-28. It was a net of one point that won this fight. The post-fight statistics largely fell in O’Malley’s favor after outlanding Yan 85 to 76 in total strikes and 69 to 51 in significant strikes. Yan, 29, got the better of the action on the ground, converting six of 13 takedown attempts. In The Octagon interview, a humble Sugar O’Malley stated ‘Fighting is the craziest f*cking sport in the world. I had to go somewhere I’ve never been before.’

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