The “Sugar Show” is returning to Las Vegas.
On Thursday afternoon, MMAFighting confirmed an initial report from ESPN of Sean O’Malley making his long-awaited return to the Octagon against Marlon Vera at UFC 239 in July.
O’Malley (10-0) has not fought since his hard-fought decision win over Andre Soukhamthath at UFC 222 in March 2018. While “Sugar” was expected to return against José Alberto Quinonez at UFC 229, he later revealed a potential anti-doping violation had forced him off the card. The U.S. Anti-Doping Agency eventually handed O’Malley a six-month suspension after determining the trace amounts of the banned substance ostarine in his system were consistent with contamination supplement. Almost immediately after this announcement, a “free” O’Malley took Twitter to declare he would return in July.
To date, The MMA Lab product has finished seven of his 10 wins, including six by (T)KO.
Vera (13-5-1), a veteran of The Ultimate Fighter: Latin America, is looking to extend his win streak to four straight inside the Octagon. In his most recent outing, “Chito” starched Frankie Saenz early in the first round of their contest UFC Nashville. Prior to this, fans saw Vera knock out Wuliji Buren followed by a submission over Guido Cannetti.
To date, the Ecuadorian has finished 11 of his 13 professional wins, including seven by way of submission.
UFC 239 will go down inside the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. With this latest addition, here is how the entire card stands:
Jon Jones (c) vs. Thiago Santos – for UFC light heavyweight championship
Amanda Nunes (c) vs. Holly Holm – for UFC bantamweight championship
Francis Ngannou vs. Junior dos Santos
Jan Blachowicz vs. Luke Rockhold
Edmen Shahbazyan vs. Jack Marshman
Diego Sanchez vs. Michael Chiesa
Jorge Masvidal vs. Ben Askren
Sean O’Malley vs. Marlon Vera
(c) – champion