UFC 292 results and post-fight analysis: Sean O’Malley is now a world champion

Analyzing the key moments from UFC 292 and its two title fights, that saw Sean O'Malley crowned as champion.

By: Anton Tabuena | 1 month ago
Sean O'Malley won the UFC title after knocking out Aljamain Sterling at UFC 292.
IMAGO / USA Today / Stephen R. Sylvanie

Sean O’Malley knocks out Sterling to become champion at UFC 292

There was a good number of people that said Sean O’Malley didn’t deserve the title shot against Aljamain Sterling. At UFC 292, none of that mattered as he scored a knockout and took the belt.

Sterling didn’t seem to have much urgency to clinch or wrestle, and it gave O’Malley enough time to get his reads in against a usually unorthodox and awkward fighter. He eventually caught Sterling rushing in, countering with a perfect step back right hand to drop and eventually finish the longtime king at bantamweight.

Sean O’Malley is now the world champion. I didn’t think I’d be typing this, especially this soon, but the Suga Show is officially here.

He’s already a huge marketable star — even without a manager — but everything is surely going to skyrocket from here.

After both of them picked up wins at UFC 292, the Chito Vera rematch is likely his first title defense. It’ll be very interesting how long O’Malley can keep this belt in such a deep division, but UFC likely got their next mainstream superstar.

Watch that beautiful shot and finish:

Weili Zhang completely dominates to defend title at UFC 292

Weili Zhang was absolutely dominant as she defended her strawweight title. In doing so, she also showcased a far better wrestling and overall ground game. Her work with the Hickman brothers in Bangtao and BJJ champ Josh Hinger in the US was evident, and she outclassed Lemos on pretty much every ground exchange. It wasn’t even just control either, as the insane 288 to 21 strike difference showed.

Even as champion, Weili keeps improving. That’s impressive for someone already at the top of the sport, but it’s not really surprising to me anymore after seeing her insane work ethic first hand, even when outside fight camp.

Apart from setting a record for biggest strike difference, Zhang also deservedly got a couple of 10-8 rounds scored for her.

Ian Garry’s breakout performance, and other key UFC 292 bouts

Ian Machado Garry stole the show and put on a legit star-making performance against Neil Magny. He made a really good ranked contender look like he didn’t even belong in there. Those leg kicks were nasty, set up really well, and he just never let up. He had excellent volume, pressure, and a varied attack. It was so one-sided he even had 30-24 score.

Garry had considerable hype coming into UFC 292, but it’s probably going to ramp up significantly after this. “The Future” is indeed bright.

Chito Vera beat Pedro Munhoz in a pretty high level fight from boxing range. Both had really nice reads, counters and a lot of kicks mixed in even from up close, but Chito clearly landed the harder and more damaging strikes. No finish, but it was a fun to watch from a technical stand point.

I’m not sure why Blackshear vs. Bautista was a PPV main card fight, and that 30-27 card was just horrible.

New TUF champs, Weidman gets badly leg kicked at UFC 292

Former UFC champion Chris Weidman returned from that badly broken leg and a two-year layoff, only for his other leg to get badly chewed up.

Things sadly and quite predictably didn’t go his way, with age and ring rust really showing in the opening round, where he was tentative and slow to react. Brad Tavares defended every takedown attempt, then picked him apart with heavy leg kicks that had Weidman badly limping and severely compromised.

Weidman showed heart and made it to the final bell, but at 39, clearly out of his prime, and now seven losses in nine fights, he has serious choices to make.

I’m not quite sure why TUF is still a thing really, but Brad Katona put on a great fight and became a two-time Ultimate Fighter winner. The other winner from the TUF 31 season is Kurt Holobaugh, who pulled off a pretty slick armbar to triangle transition. I may not have very high expectations on their second UFC runs, but they definitely earned their spot back with the UFC after their first stints both ended in 2019.

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About the author
Anton Tabuena
Anton Tabuena

Anton Tabuena is the Managing Editor for Bloody Elbow. He’s been covering MMA and combat sports since 2009, and has also fought in MMA, Muay Thai and kickboxing.

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