Well, it’s almost become customary during fight week for polarizing UFC bantamweight contender, Sean O’Malley to dye his hair a wide array of colours ahead of a Saturday Octagon appearance.

Attempting to rebound from his first professional loss, O’Malley draws faltering Brazilian Muay Thai expert, Thomas Almeida in a main card clash, with the former attempting to bounce back from a knockout loss to Marlon Vera last August, while the latter plans on snapping a three-fight skid. 

Dropping an opening round knockout defeat to Team Oyama trainee, Vera, O’Malley spoke ahead of the matchup earlier this week, maintaining that he wasn’t beatenskill-wise by the Ecuadorian, chalking the loss up to the fact Vera had injured his peroneal nerve with his “big toe” midway through the round. Stumbling to the canvas with seconds left in the frame, O’Malley was met with a series of elbows from Vera — who handed the Montana native his first professional defeat.

I’ve been saying it (mentally undefeated) since the fight,” O’Malley said during a recent interview with ESPN MMA reporter, Ariel Helwani. “It’s kinda turned into a joke for me — I’ve explained it a bunch, but I’ll say it again for you. I don’t feel — I wasn’t beaten that night because my skills weren’t as good (as Vera’s) — I know you said, I think looking back on it — it was the calf kick. It definitely wasn’t a calf kick if you go back and rewatch it. Literally, his big toe hit my peroneal nerve and it caused drop foot.

It wasn’t a — calf kicks suck, you know, they hurt bad,” O’Malley explained. “But they don’t give you drop foot, at least with the first one, but yeah, I don’t know. It was — I didn’t feel like I lost cause my skills weren’t better than his. I had a great training camp, everything felt good, it just happened that way. But I don’t think I lost — I got a lot of sh*t for saying that, ‘mentally undefeated’ or whatever, but it is what it is. I’m excited to go back in there and perform.

Posting a video on his official Tik Tok, O’Malley posted a time-lapse of the dying process of his hair done by a hairdresser. 

Ahead of his UFC 250 clash with former WEC bantamweight best, Eddie Wineland last June, O’Malley also dyed his hair various colours — turning in a Knockout of the Year contender against the veteran, prior to his August return.
Against the above-mentioned, Vera in the co-main event of UFC 252, O’Malley sported dyed hair again, featuring the colours of the Ecuadorian flag; yellow, blue, and red — granted, admitting the inspiration he received from Vera to dye his hair.

The inspiration I got to colour my hair, I’d have to say was from ‘Chito’ (Marlon Vera),” O’Malley said. “(He) gave me inspiration. I’m just showing my Ecuadorian fans some love. I think every fight we’ll do something different and have a nice little theme. It’s something I look forward to and it’s fun.

Aspiring mixed martial arts reporter based in Ireland. Follow along at @Ross_Markey on Twitter for all the latest news, fight announcements, opinion, and feature pieces.