Sean O'Connell apologizes for embarrassing hot mic moment at PFL 2 (Video)

On-air personality Sean O'Connell was caught making an inappropriate joke during the ESPN broadcast.
PFL smart cage
PFL smart cage /

The co-main event of PFL 2 ended with former champion Rob Wilkinson knocking out Tom Breese with a massive knee and a flurry of hammer fists in just 70 seconds. The performance had everyone talking including on-air personality Sean O'Connell, who might have forgotten about the hot mics on PFL commentators.

When the production cut away someone forgot to shut off O'Connell's microphone and everyone watching live on ESPN heard him crack a terrible joke about Wilkinson and performance-enhancing drugs.

O'Connell was caught saying, "Can I ask him about his steroids, where he got 'em?" Listen to the moment in the clip below. It's so bad.

This was regarding Wilkinson's failed drug test that led to his nine-month suspension from the 2023 light heavyweight season. His stoppage win against Thiago Santos was overturned due to elevated testosterone, and he even missed his fight against Ty Flores in the co-main event of the PFL 4 card on June 8, 2023. This was his first fight back since the incident which left a dark mark over PFL. He was one of a whopping 10 fighters were were flagged from a series of events in Las Vegas in 2023.

The verbal slip-up during the live telecast spread like wildfire, and O'Connell was quick to issue an apology on Twitter.

Sean O'Connell cracked a joke about Rob Wilkinson's PED suspension

Admitting that he had no intention of stealing the limelight from Wilkison after his great performance, O'Connell apologized for his words and promised to be better going forward.

"Apologies to Rob Wilkinson and team about the wisecrack on hot mic. [Factory X] Gotta be better. Never want to be a lame distraction from a great performance," he wrote tagging in Wilkinson's gym in the apology.

O'Connell's apology has received a mixed response from fans. While some acknowledged that the incident came across as unprofessional, others reminded O'Connell that his commentary on PFL has been great so far and his mistake should not change the fact that PFL 2 was a great night of fights.

It is safe to assume that O'Connell didn't want to really ask Wilkinson about steroid use and his remark caught on the hot mic was a joke. During the actual post-fight interview, O'Connell hyped Wilkinson's undefeated record in the PFL and primarily talked about the explosive sequence that led to the stoppage.

Wilkinson who was unaware of O'Connell's hot mic joke was hyped during the interview too. He reminded everyone that the light heavyweight champion is back and ready to take on whoever the promotion deems fit as his next opponent.

When Wilkinson was initially flagged he issued a public apology on Instagram writing, "After my last fight on April 1st, I failed an in-competition drug test, which has resulted in my suspension for the rest of the 2023 PFL season. I have and will continue to reflect on all the reasons that led me down this path, but regardless of these reasons, I am extremely disappointed in myself. I want to emphasize that I wholeheartedly accept full responsibility for the choices I have made and the consequences that have come with it."

After his win at PFL 2, he is currently ranked No. 1 in the light heavyweight standings above 2023 champion Impa Kasanganay.


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