Dominick Cruz Downplays Past Sean O’Malley Fight Booking Rumors

Dominick Cruz Sean O'Malley
Photos Courtesy of MMA Fighting and © Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

Dominick Cruz vs. Sean O’Malley had previously been rumored as the next targeted fight for both men at 135 pounds, but both fighters ended up booking different opponents. O’Malley hinted at a potential fight with Cruz earlier this summer, but negotiations never materialized.

Now, Cruz completely doubts that O’Malley was being genuine when he hinted at wanting a fight with him.

Cruz is in the middle of preparation for his UFC return later this year, against Pedro Munhoz at UFC 269. Coincidentally, O’Malley will be on the same exact card to end the year against Raulian Paiva.

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The bantamweight division continues to be one of the most exciting in the UFC, but Cruz doesn’t think that an O’Malley fight could be in the cards anytime soon.

UFC bantamweights Dominick Cruz and Sean O’Malley, once rumored to be targeted opponents, will both return at UFC 269

“I have had a couple of talks with [Sean] Shelby about why is this [a fight with Sean O’Malley] is being thrown out there but I think it was just O’Malley throwing it out to media to see what could be stirred up and made,” Cruz said during a recent interview with Ariel Helwani. I know it’s as simple as sitting in front of Sean Shelby man-to-man, eye-to-eye, being clear, being concise, telling him what you want and he’ll probably give it to you. It’s not that hard to get through to Sean Shelby.”

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“I don’t think Shelby would have had a problem with giving him me if O’Malley would have asked him for it.”

O’Malley has been criticized during his young UFC career for not taking fights with ranked opponents, ever since he fell to the 14th-ranked contender Marlon Vera at UFC 252.

O’Malley defeated Kris Moutinho at UFC 264 earlier this year, while Cruz got back in the win column against Casey Kenney at UFC 259. The two could potentially be on a collision course if both keeping moving up the bantamweight ranks.

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Do you think we’ll ever see a Dominick Cruz vs. Sean O’Malley fight?

Curtis Calhoun is a Combat Sports Contributor based in Seattle, Washington. After a longtime dream of becoming a sports journalist, he was able to accomplish his goals upon graduating from Washington State University in 2016.