Whilst incumbent bantamweight champion, Sean O’Malley believes undefeated welterweight contender, Ian Machado Garry can most definitely become a superstar whilst competing under the banner of the UFC – victories such as his decision win over the veteran, Neil Magny won’t go far in propelling him toward those heights.
O’Malley, who struck undisputed bantamweight gold last month in his first pay-per-view main event at UFC 292, dispatched defending champion and division great, Aljamain Sterling with a second round TKO – dropping the Uniondale early in the frame with a counter punch, before finishing with follow-up ground strikes.
On that same card, Portmarnock native, Machado Garry improved to 13-0 as a professional, with the former Cage Warriors titleholder wrapping up a shutout unanimous decision win over the above-mentioned most-winningest welterweight, Magny on the main card.
Sean O’Malley unsure if Ian Machado Garry can reach UFC stardom
However, despite his one-sided judging win, O’Malley – who himself is on the cusp of reaching Octagon stardom, warned Machado Garry that decision victories over contenders akin to Magny must come few and far between for him during his UFC tenure.
“Yeah, I think he (Ian Machado Garry) could [become a superstar], for sure,” Sean O’Malley told Peter Carroll during a recent appearance on The Craic. “Will he? We’ll see. I think the reason I’m in the spot I’m in, is because of my performances. You know, I have some f*cking sweet knockouts. So, I think to get to that certain level of a Conor (McGregor), you know, knocking out Jose (Aldo), knocking out Chad Mendes, knocking out Eddie Alvarez. You can’t go out there and beat Neil Magny in a decision and be a superstar.”
Himself eyeing a title rematch with Marlon Vera before the end of the year at UFC 296 in December, O’Malley has set sights on avenging his sole career knockout loss, dating back to a 2020 grudge match.
As for Machado Garry, welcoming a striking battle with former title challenger, Stephen Thompson before the end of the annum to boot, the Dubliner recently hit headlines after claiming he would walk into Miami and “slap the mouth” off of former interim champion, Colby Covington.