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Sean O’Malley reacts to Sean Strickland’s mental health issues, suspects too much sparring is root cause

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UFC bantamweight champion Sean O’Malley is not terribly surprised to hear former middleweight title holder Sean Strickland admit mental health issues.

Strickland this past month told his social media followers that despite having everything he wants, he sometimes feels “mentally unwell” and a danger to others. O’Malley believes the ex-champ may be spending too much time taking punishment, he said earlier this week on his video podcast, TimboSugar Show.

“It’s like, duh,” O’Malley said. “Anyone that says that they literally have a [desire] to kill people probably aren’t doing mentally well. You either love or you hate, and if you want to kill people for no reason. … I mean, he’s honest about it, which is f****** pretty crazy.

“Just going in there and sparring and getting hit in the head — not that he gets hit that much, but if you’re getting hit not that much, but you spar every day, that adds up.”

Strickland’s message appears to be for a purpose as he tells his fans he “wanted to share this and remind you you’re not alone.” It’s still a startling admission for an active UFC fighter and former champ with a massive fan base.

“All week, I’ve been on the Twitter saying crazy s***, just spiraling,” Strickland said in his post. “I woke up and I told my girl, I was like, ‘Babe, I feel like… I feel like a danger to people. I don’t feel like I should be out in the world, you know?’ And I think that I have everything — I’m rich, I’m famous, like I have everything I ever f****** wanted, and I still am mentally unwell. And I get in these mindsets where like I want to burn everything down in the world. Like I want to have nothing, so I can just f****** lose it and just take out everything on people.

“And I think that like you guys, in a weird way, are like my family. Like I’ve shared some s*** with you guys, and you guys have shared some s*** with me that like, I feel more connected with my fans than I think most people feel, just because we’ve gone through a lot together. And man, you know, I have everything I want and I still struggle with mental health. And my memory is so short that like when I go out to this week, I think to myself — like, once I get past it, I think to myself, ‘Man, that was a really rough time in my life.’

“But then when I really think about it, this happens multiple times a month, every month, you know. … I don’t know why I’m telling you guys this, I’ve just been kind of going through some s***. I’m fine, I’ll be fine.”

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