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Sean O'Malley: My next fight is for the title

Chris Unger / UFC / Getty

UFC president Dana White told Sean O'Malley that his next fight will be for the bantamweight championship, the No. 1-ranked bantamweight said Monday, according to ESPN's Marc Raimondi.

O'Malley is targeting a return to the Octagon in July 2023.

The 28-year-old is coming off a split-decision victory against former champion Petr Yan at UFC 280 in October. The win was the biggest of his career.

It's still unclear who O'Malley's next opponent will be. Current champion Aljamain Sterling beat TJ Dillashaw in October to retain his title and could fight former double champion Henry Cejudo before July, according to Raimondi.

O'Malley said he'd like to fight Cejudo next.

"It's a better win, beating the two-time world champ, two weight (classes), Olympic gold medalist," O'Malley added. "If you're just going off that, what win looks better? A win over Aljo or a win over Henry? For me, a win over Henry looks better."

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