Pedro Munhoz says Sean O’Malley scratched his cornea at UFC 276: ‘I couldn’t see anything’

·3 min read

UFC bantamweight Pedro Munhoz revealed he suffered an injury as a result of a fight-ending foul Saturday.

At UFC 276, the fight between Munhoz and Sean O'Malley ended in a no contest due to an inadvertent eye poke. Midway through Round 2, O’Malley’s fingers raked Munhoz’s face and rendered the Brazilian fighter unable to continue, according to the cageside physician’s assessment.

Hours after the fight, Munhoz said the diagnosis from a hospital visit was 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 in Portuguese (English translation via MMA Fighting). “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 eye drop 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.”

Despite his explanation, the comments on the video post consisted of insults, criticisms and accusations of faking injury. But as one Twitter user pointed out. Munhoz, 35, has fought a who’s-who of the bantamweight division, including champion Aljamain Sterling, former champs Dominick Cruz, Jose Aldo and Frankie Edgar, and Rob Font – and has never been finished in his professional career.

Munhoz did not give a timeline for his return or if he wants to rematch O’Malley, who claimed at his post-fight news conference he thought Munhoz “100 percent” looked for a way out. According to the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP), corneal abrasions can take anywhere from a day to three months to heal on average, depending on severity.

According to UFC senior vice president of athlete development Reed Harris, Munhoz’s eye swelled shut overnight. Harris added Munhoz acknowledged the foul was an accident and remained respectful toward O’Malley.

UFC 276 took place Saturday at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.