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Petr Yan vs. Sean O’Malley targeted for UFC 280

MMA: JUL 02 UFC 276 Photo by Alejandro Salazar/PxImages/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Sean O’Malley is preparing for a big step up in competition this fall.

On Wednesday, O’Malley announced on ESPN’s DC & RC that he’s fighting Petr Yan at UFC 280, which takes place Oct. 22 in Abu Dhabi. MMA Fighting subsequently confirmed with a person with knowledge of the promotion’s plans that the fight has been verbally agreed upon, but contracts haven’t been issued.

Yan’s manager Daniel Rubenstein reiterated that stance while speaking on Wednesday’s edition of The MMA Hour, and that the fight is not 100 percent done as of yet.

If booked, it will be the first fight for Yan since falling short in his bid to regain the undisputed UFC bantamweight title in April at UFC 273, where he was on the wrong end of a split decision. “No Mercy” lost the title to Sterling via disqualification due to an illegal knee at UFC 259 in March 2021 before capturing the interim title seven months later against Cory Sandhagen at UFC 276.

O’Malley recently competed at UFC 276 earlier this month where he fought Pedro Munhoz to a no contest after an accidental eye poke in the second round led to the bout being stopped. Prior to that, “Sugar” picked up three straight stoppage wins over Thomas Almeida, Kris Moutinho, and Raulian Paiva.

UFC 280 will be headlined by a vacant lightweight title fight between Charles Oliveira and Islam Makhachev.

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