UFC 269: Sean O’Malley Says Garbrandt “One Fight Away from the Commentary Booth”

Sean O'Malley, UFC 269
Sean O'Malley, UFC 269 pre-fight press conference Credit: Gabriel Gonzalez/Cageside Press

Despite having a fight with Raulian Paiva lined up at UFC 269, Sean O’Malley seemed to have more heat with ex-bantamwieght champ Cody Garbrandt at Thursday’s pre-fight press conference.

To be fair, the pair have traded blows on social media before. They got a little closer on Thursday, continuing to trade jibes despite Garbrandt’s drop to flyweight.

“This dude, he comes out here, he does his thing, he walks his walk, he’s dressed, he does the hair, but he’s got different problems than ‘No Love’ problems,” Garbrandt said Thursday. “He’s got Raulian to my right, and Raulian is battle-tested way farther than he’s ever been.”

“He’s won one fight since 2017,” O’Malley fired back. The Contender Series alum isn’t wrong; Garbrandt’s lone win since 2016 came against Raphael Assuncao last year.

“That’s a good one. And you haven’t fought anybody. Who the f*ck have you fought?” questioned Garbrandt.

Garbrandt, disingenuously or not, said he can’t be mad at O’Malley. “He understands when he jumps up in competition, his hype goes away.” The ex-champ then called O’Malley “easy work” before adding he wasn’t worried about the “Suga Show.”

“You sound a little worried,” suggested O’Malley, who then asked UFC President Dana White if the pair could square up in an impromptu face-off. Security split them up before that could happen.

Later, O’Malley was asked if the build-up to UFC 269 was living up to what he wanted the “Suga Show” to be.

“It’s super cool to be up here. I’m constantly, squaring off with Cody or whatever, there’s just so many fights for me.” When Garbrandt fired a response, off mic, O’Malley suggested that “Cody’s one fight away from the commentary booth next to Dominick Cruz. I don’t know what the f*ck he’s talking about.”

Garbrandt actually came to former foe Cruz’s defense. “He’s still done more than what you’re ever going to do in this career. You’re never going to amount to nothing, trust me.”

For a fight that is unlikely to happen given Garbrandt has opted to drop down to flyweight, it’s a heck of a build up.