Sean O’Malley calls for Merab Dvalishvili next, teases ‘2025 will be legendary;’ Dvalishvili responds


Sean O’Malley has made up his mind. He wants Merab Dvalishvili next.

At UFC 299, O’Malley put on one of the best performances of his career, dominating Marlon Vera to retain his UFC bantamweight title. After his big win, O’Malley immediately called for a shot at newly crowned featherweight champion Ilia Topuria, before later adding, “If you guys want me to knockout Merab, I’ll do that too.” Well, nearly a week removed from his performance, O’Malley seems to have shifted his focus to Dvalishvili, calling for him next and teasing a “legendary” 2025 to come.

With Dvalishvili currently on a 10-fight winning streak, UFC CEO Dana White even suggested the Georgian contender was the obvious next choice of opponent for O’Malley after Dvalishvili dominated former champion Henry Cejudo at UFC 298. Even so, O’Malley repeatedly made his interest known in jumping up to face Topuria ahead of UFC 299, or in a boxing superfight.

All of it has frustrated Dvalishvili, who responded to O’Malley on Friday, taking umbrage with the idea that he may have to wait another year to get a shot at the title.

When the two do finally lock horns, be it this year or next, the bout is sure to be among the most anticipated on the calendar, given their stature in the bantamweight division and the rivalry between O’Malley and Dvalishvili’s team.


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