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MX News Update 2024

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‘Clout haunts’ UFC coach criticized by former champion for interference in KO title fight… ‘I wanted to punch you’

Former UFC bantamweight champion Aljamain Sterling has criticized Sean O’Malley’s coach Tim Welch as an ‘interference’ video went viral on social media.

The typically mild-mannered Aljamain Sterling certainly chose not to mince his words when he criticized Sean O’Malley’s head coach Tim Welch, claiming he wanted to punch the veteran trainer during their UFC 292 title fight in Boston.

Sean O'Malley and Aljamain Sterling after O'Malley's victory by TKO for the bantamweight title in the UFC 292 main, even at TD Garden.
Photo by Barry Chin/The Boston Globe via Getty Images

Footage appears to show O’Malley’s coach posing as Sterling’s corner

Over the past 24 hours, footage of Aljamain Sterling vs. Sean O’Malley has gone viral online after the UFC posted a video of the bantamweight title fight without the audio track from the commentary booth.

In the video, fans hear and see head coach Tim Welch imitating Sterling’s corner kick as he shouts, “Aljo, you gotta go!” – before ‘Funkmaster’ uncharacteristically rushes forward only to be eliminated just seconds later.

The unique footage has certainly caused a stir in the MMA community, with both Aljamain Sterling and Tim Welch choosing to slam each other on social media.

Aljamain Sterling slams coach Tim Welch for interfering in UFC title fight

The Twitter (X) wire began when top prospect Merab Dvalishvili posted, “I’ll punch O’Malley in the cage then punch his coach outside the cage,” to which Welch replied, “Are you mad, I said your nose is the big brother.”

Sterling then launched a series of attacks on Welch for “talking s*** (and) power chasing,” with the coach advised to “let your fighter talk, you’re not cutting Jimmy Neutron anymore.”

“You talked a lot during my fight with Sean. The referee had to tell you to stfu several times. I wanted to punch you between rounds and I regret not getting the fine for it. You should know better as a former fighter and current coach.”

The former bantamweight king said: “You don’t have to join in the trash talk unless you want the trouble too. It’s that simple, brother.”

Well responded claiming he was only talking about Dvalishvili “because I know how dangerous he is” ahead of the expected title fight later this year, adding: “I don’t mind kicking up a little dust here and there doing, it’s all great fun.”

“Clearances are cool for the FIGHTERS BRO. Not the coach,” ‘Funkmaster’ argued in turn, before revealing that Welch has a history of giving wrong advice to his fighters’ opponents in the UFC:

‘You crossed the line several times and that’s why Merab said he would fight you too. Same s*** when we almost fought the Cejudos team. They talked as if they were fighting. You’re making yourself fair game. That’s all I’m saying.”

John McCarthy looks at the situation from the referee’s perspective

But beyond the entertaining back and forth on social media, there’s also an interesting conversation about whether what Tim Welch did would technically be grounds for official action.

Fortunately, the MMA community has veteran referee John McCarthy to lean on for expert guidance revealed that the sport used to have a rule against a corner talking to an opponent – ​​but that rule is no longer used in the same way:

“Well, we used to have a rule that a corner person couldn’t talk to his fighter’s opponent during the match. When the Unified Rules came into effect, we used: Interference from a mixed martial artist’s angle or seconds; A. Interference is defined as any action or (b.) activity designed to disrupt the fight or cause an unfair advantage to be given to the combatant from one corner.”

“Corners must not in any way distract the referee or influence the referee’s actions,” the veteran referee added, before finally giving his conclusion on the legality of Welch’s imitation:

“Does this kind of action fit within the criteria for saying that a violation has been committed… I think you really have to go out of your way to think that.”

Aljamain Sterling recently scored a unanimous decision victory over Calvin Kattar at UFC 300, while Sean O’Malley vs. Merab Dvalishvili is expected to take place later this summer.

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