Tim Welch takes blame for Sean O’Malley’s leg injury in Marlon Vera loss, points to ankle wraps as reason

Tim Welch takes responsibility for Sean O'Malley injuring his leg against Marlon Vera in his lone-career loss.

O’Malley (17-1 MMA, 9-1 UFC) suffered a first-round TKO to Vera (21-8-1 MMA, 15-7 UFC) in August 2020, after “Chito” kicked his peroneal nerve and finished him moments later on the ground in Round 1.

O’Malley insisted the loss was a fluke, but Welch thinks it may not have just been a freak accident. Welch explains that O’Malley’s ankle wrap situation was likely the cause – and he takes the blame for it.

“I got to take a lot of the blame on this,” Welch said on his YouTube channel. “One of the UFC people wrapped his ankles, and a couple times – ‘Sugar’ usually never complains about anything. A couple times he said ‘This ankle wrap is too tight.’ He said it twice. After the second time, I had the guys cut a little bit on the top, cut a little bit on the ankle, and I thought for sure it would loosen up.

“We were done with our warmup, they said we were walking in five minutes, so we did feel a little rushed. Looking back, 100 percent, I should’ve said ‘Hey, take that wrap off, and let’s re-do it. The fight can wait, let’s re-do this wrap’ because if you’ve ever had your ankle wrapped too tight, the blood just can’t flow to it, and it feels like your foot is literally falling asleep. So imagine being in a fistfight and your foot is fully asleep.”

Bantamweight champion O’Malley runs things back with Vera for his first title defense in Saturday’s UFC 299 (pay-per-view, ESPNews, ESPN+) main event at Kaseya Center in Miami.

For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for UFC 299.

Story originally appeared on MMA Junkie