During the second round of their main card contest, Munhoz suffered an eye poke from “Sugar” that left him unable to continue. The fight was called off on the ringside doctor’s advice and was ruled a no-contest.
Many fighters and fans took to Twitter to voice their disappointment with the result, with some raising skepticism about the eye poke. For example, multiple-time UFC title challenger Kenny Florian tweeted: “Looks like no finger went in the eye to me but I’m not in there. RE: Munhoz vs O’Malley.”
Former UFC middleweight Elias Theodorou tweeted: “Looks like Munoz really wanted a way out.”
When O’Malley spoke with the media backstage, he was asked if he believed Munhoz was looking for a shorter night at the office. “100 percent,” Sugar answered. “That’s what’s going on in my mind.”
Munhoz Said He Went to the Hospital After Their Fight, Suffered a Scratched Cornea
“To explain briefly what happened in the fight against Sean O’Malley, I was poked in the eye in the first round but kept fighting, and was hit with a low blow shortly after,” Munhoz said. “The fight restarted and we exchanged a few strikes. In the second round, that’s when I suffered another eye poke. I couldn’t see anything for 20 minutes. I was taken to the hospital and they used a special eyedrop that made my eye numb so they could open my eye.
“They did an exam and the medical report I have is that there’s a scratch in the cornea all the way around it. I couldn’t open my eye because of that and couldn’t see anything. The referee asked if I could see at all and the doctor decided to stop the fight. That’s what happened tonight.”
O’Malley Believes He Was ‘Dominating’ Munhoz Before the Fight Was Called Off
During the post-fight press conference, Sugar said he was en route to beating Munhoz, who O’Malley believes he was “dominating.” Munhoz employed a heavy leg kick game, however Sugar successfully checked them several times during the round-and-a-half fight.
“When it (the eye poke) happened, I was like, okay, it didn’t feel like it was bad. I thought we were going to be fighting in 20 seconds. I didn’t think the fight was going to be stopped,” O’Malley said via MMA Weekly.
“I was dominating that fight. I checked every one of his leg kicks. I could feel his shins cracking. Every time he would throw a kick I’d check it, and I could tell that it hurt him. I didn’t get hit one time. I was dominating that fight. I was piecing him up. I was finding my range. It sucks,” O’Malley added.