O’Malley (13-1 MMA, 5-1 UFC) was originally slated to fight Louis Smolka in a bantamweight bout on Saturday’s card, but he was compelled to withdraw and replaced by Moutinho (9-4 MMA, 0-0 UFC), who can be making his octagon debut at the occasion at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. The main card airs on pay-per-search following prelims on ESPN and ESPN+.
The matchup was met with criticism from a part of fans and media, mainly because a assortment of fighters who are established at 135 pounds offered to step in. O’Malley said he was ready to fight anyone, but his condition was that it had to be at bantamweight.
Ricky Simon was the frontrunner initially, but O’Malley said it didn’t advance to fruition because he was chubby.
“They sent me a list of a couple guys, Simon being one in all them,” O’Malley informed MMA Junkie at UFC 264 media day on Thursday. “I informed them, ‘I want to stay on the card. I’ve had a great camp and my weight is trending towards a bantamweight fight. Rating me somebody that can make ’35.’ They sent me a list of names, Simon was the hardest one on there and I picked him. They called me and said. ‘He can’t make weight.’ I don’t know if it was a miscommunication that they attach his name in there, for ’45. I informed the UFC, I was beautiful clear that I want to fight at ’35. So, I dunno. There’s a lot of folk on Twitter that called me out that weren’t on that list. I’m just happy I’m on the card at ’35.”
Ultimately Moutinho was the man to catch the fight, and O’Malley said the narrative he’s combating a “can” is unfair. He’s started to enact his research on his upcoming foe, and has advance to search out out that “it’s level-headed going to be a tricky fight.” Because of that O’Malley is taking it critically.
“A lot of folk mediate it’s a lose-lose for me,” O’Malley said. “I make a lot of cash to exit there and knock the man (out). This guy’s tricky. I watched one in all his fights this morning and he’s not just a scrub, he’s not a no person. Wisely, he’s roughly a no person because no person really knows who he’s. Nevertheless to be fair, not a lot of folk know who Simon is, really. He’s beat a couple dudes within the UFC. I couldn’t repeat you the way many fights he’s had within the UFC. So he comes in there, he shocks the field, it’s a large fight for him. Props to him for stepping up to take it.”
Although O’Malley is treating Moutinho with admire, it doesn’t mean he expects it to be particularly aggressive within the octagon. O’Malley has every intention of opening the pay-per-search main card with a highlight-reel achieve and said after that he has plans to call out a large name in his weight class.
“He may saunter in there thinking it’s a recall-recall for him,” O’Malley said. “He goes accessible and loses, he’s within the UFC. Nevertheless I don’t just knock folk out. I change folk’s careers. Mentally, the way I knock folk out, they step into that cage and they’re varied the next time they catch accessible. So it may perchance be the foundation of his career or it may perchance be the pause of his career. So, we’ll notice.”