Wednesday, May 25, 2022

Sean O’Malley Backs Alexander Volkanovski For 2-Division Success

Rising UFC bantamweight contender Sean O’Malley believes featherweight king Alexander Volkanovski has what it takes to become a two-division champion.

At UFC 273 this past weekend, Volkanovski secured an ascent to the #2 spot in the promotion’s pound-for-pound rankings, and to the status of 145-pound GOAT in the eyes of some.

The Australian did so by adding the renowned name of “The Korean Zombie” Chan Sung Jung to his über-impressive record. With a brutal beating that came to an end early in the fourth round, Alexander “The Great” extended his active win streak to 21 and his promotional slate to 11-0.

While the featherweight shark tank certainly isn’t short of hungry contenders, Volkanovski has expressed his desire to potentially move up to lightweight in the near future to attempt to add a second championship belt to his collection.

One of his UFC peers firmly believes that pursuit could be successful for the Aussie.

O’Malley: Volkanovski Is Gonna Be Hard To Beat

During a recent interview with Helen Yee, #13-ranked bantamweight Sean O’Malley assessed Volkanovski’s chances at a higher weight, appearing to agree with the champ’s recent suggestion that a transition to 155 pounds wouldn’t be a struggle.

After “100 percent” backing Volkanovski’s chances to achieve champ-champ status, “Sugar” cited the featherweight titleholder’s submission defense and gas tank as reasons why it’ll be extremely hard for anyone, including lightweights, to defeat him.

“100% (I can see him as a future two-division champion),” said O’Malley. “I think he’s gonna be, you know, he’s gonna be hard to submit, clearly, Ortega had him in some deep submissions; he’s not known for gassing out, he’s got a crazy gas tank; he’s got a good chin. I remember watching him when he fought Chad Mendes and I was like, ‘Holy sh*t, this dude’s gonna be a problem.’

“It’s gonna be hard to beat him. Max did drop him a couple times, I think, in the second fight… I’m interested in what he does next,” added O’Malley. “I wouldn’t mind watching him fight the winner of (Charles Oliveira vs. Justin Gaethje).”

Reigning 155-pound king Oliveira is set to defend his title at UFC 274 next month against former interim champ Gaethje. Despite Islam Makhachev and Beneil Dariush waiting in the wings, and likely to meet later this year in a title eliminator, it seems the potential arrival of Volkanovski in the mix could shake up the championship picture.

Do you agree with Sean O’Malley? Can Alexander Volkanovski achieve two-division success in the UFC?

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