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“Welcome to the Sugar Show!”: Helena’s Sean O’Malley earns UFC contract

Posted at 5:19 PM, Jul 18, 2017
and last updated 2018-07-17 19:45:23-04
Sean O’Malley earned a contract with the UFC following a thrilling knockout on the Tuesday Night Contender Series (Courtesy: UFC FightPass)

LAS VEGAS – “Welcome to the Sugar Show!”

That’s what Helena mixed martial arts fighter “Sugar” Sean O’Malley (8-0) said to UFC President Dane White following his thrilling knockout of Alfred Khashakyan (8-4) during the second episode of White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series.

O’Malley, known for his striking, ended the fight with a straight punch at the 4:14 mark of the first round. White was on his feet and cheering when the bell rang as O’Malley performed his signature celebratory backflip in the center of the ring after another viral knockout.

Per UFC stats, O’Malley attempted 45 strikes and landed 27 of them for a 60% average. He knocked his opponent down twice in one round.

The performance earned O’Malley a contract with the UFC where he will compete in the bantamweight division.

“I’m looking for exciting, I’m looking for flashy, I’m looking for someone who has that thing,” White said in an interview on UFC FightPass following the fights. “Sean O’Malley is that thing.”

“I pictured me knocking this kid out,” O’Malley said after shaking hands with White. “I pictured me knocking this kid out and everything is just going perfect.”

“I like this kid,” White added. “I like everything about him, I like his fighting style. I think the kid has the style and obviously the mentality to be a star and to win fights and I’m going to give him the opportunity and the rest is up to him.”

For his part, O’Malley plans on making the most of his chance.

“I just want to keep getting better, keep training,” said the Helena Capital graduate. “I love to fight. They’ll give me who they give me.”

221 Industries CEO Cory Smith was the first promoter to offer O’Malley a professional contract back in 2014.

“We all saw it coming,” Smith told MTN Sports. “It’s emotional, he’s family. He’s just such a humble, young kid that worked so hard for this. He sacrificed for this, living in Arizona broke with like $3 in his bank account. It’s time for the world to know who he is. He deserves all of it.”

O’Malley said in the lead up to the fight that he wanted to be a household name.