UFC 292 will be held Saturday, August 19, 2023 from the TD Garden in Boston, Massachusetts. The card is headlined by a fight for the UFC Bantamweight Championship between defending champion Aljamain Sterling and No. 2 title contender Sean O’Malley. The co-main event is for the women’s strawweight title between champion Zhang Weili and No. 5 title contender Amanda Lemos.
The early preliminary card starts at 6:30 p.m. on UFC Fight Pass. The preliminary card is next up at 8 p.m. on ESPN and ESPN+. The big show gets started at 10 p.m. ET on ESPN+ PPV.
O’Malley (16-1-1) hasn’t had the stiffest competition. Only one of the past 10 fighters he’s won against is still in the UFC — Petr Yan. As a matter of fact he was knocked out by Marlon Vera, who is fighting in the opening fight on the UFC 292 main card. But with Yan, he and Sterling have a common opponent. O’Malley took on Yan at UFC 280 and won the fight by a disputed split decision. It was an amazing fight with brutal striking on both sides. Yan had six takedowns and nearly six minutes of control time, but Yan fought through it and showed that he could bang with and compete against the top guys in the bantamweight division.
Each round was hotly contested. It was a lot of back and forth action with Yan executing a couple of takedowns, but O’Malley fighting through them and landing the harder shots. The second round was clearly Yan’s round. He began to control the action with more takedowns and gaining control time. But the third round was an absolute war. O’Malley split Yan open with a nasty knee and that might have been the difference in a stanza where both guys landed bombs. The belief was that Yan did enough to win the fight. The live betting had O’Malley at +800 before the cards were read. 25 of 26 media scorecards had Yan winning, but of the three judges that matter, two had O’Malley winning 29-28 and he earned the split decision.
How O’Malley handles Sterling’s superior ground game and grappling are the questions that need to be answered. That’s why “Suga” is a +210 underdog at DraftKings Sportsbook.