Search icon


07th Jun 2018

One of the UFC’s most hyped prospects admits to copying Conor McGregor

'You can really see it in the fight the way he mimics them'

Ben Kiely

‘Sugar’ Sean O’Malley is picking up techniques from the best

Rising bantamweight Sean O’Malley is one of the most hyped fighters in the UFC. Since earning a contract with a stunning knockout on Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series, O’Malley has really felt the promotional push.

After co-headlining a Fight Night in his debut, he was thrown onto the main card of UFC 224 for his sophomore bout. A unanimous decision in each bout kept the prospect’s pristine professional record intact.

His last win was a gritty display of heart against Andre Soukhamthath. Two of the three judges awarded him a 10-8 first round. However, he suffered a foot injury in the third round that rendered him unable to stand. Remarkably, Soukhamthath followed O’Malley down to the ground allowing him to survive until the final buzzer. His foot was so beaten up, he had to give his Octagon interview with Joe Rogan while lying prone on his back.

Sean O'Malley

“I’ve always loved Conor”

During a recent appearance on the Joe Rogan MMA Show, O’Malley’s coach Tim Welch revealed that O’Malley watched several Conor McGregor fights before making the trip to the arena. He believes you could see how O’Malley’s performance was influenced by ‘the Notorious’.

“Before that last fight against Andre (Soukhamthath), we watched probably four of Conor’s fights right before we walked to the arena. And Sugar’s sitting there zoning in on those fights – watching the way he walks out, watching the way he’s good with his energy, smart with his energy, you can really see it in the fight the way he mimics them. ‘Sugar’ can watch someone do something then he can do it right away. It’s a really cool talent.”

O’Malley confirmed that watching McGregor has become a bit of a pre-fight tradition. He confessed to being a big admirer of the Irishman.

“Yeah, the last couple of fights before we go to the arena, we just throw on Fightpass, watch Conor, watch him walk out, just watch his body language. He’s the man. I love Conor. I’ve always loved Conor. I remember watching his first fight (in the UFC) thinking, ‘That dude’s going to be good.'”

If you’re going to mimic anyone, you may as well mimic the best.