UFC Mexico City gets new headliner after Amir Albazi forced off card

Former UFC flyweight champion Brandon Moreno is set to rematch recent UFC title challenger Brandon Royval at UFC Mexico City.

A UFC official confirmed Moreno vs. Royval 2 to MMA Fighting after an initial report from ESPN.com. Moreno was scheduled to face Amir Albazi, but Albazi was forced out of the event due to a neck injury, he wrote on X.

“I’m out of the fight against Moreno 24th of February,” Albazi wrote. “I have been dealing with a serious neck injury the past weeks. After some scans the UFC doctors decided to pull me out of the fight immediately. I want to apologize to the fans and the UFC. I will be back inshallah.”

Moreno and Royval first fought in November 2020 at UFC 255 when both were vying for the UFC flyweight title. Moreno stopped Royval with one second left in the first round via TKO, earning a title shot against then-champ Deiveson Figueiredo that ended in a draw and sparked a quartet of title fights.

Moreno won the series against Figueiredo with two wins to one loss and a draw. In the process, he reclaimed the UFC flyweight title before losing it in his most recent outing, a rematch against current champ Alexandre Pantoja that marked his second setback against the Brazilian.

Royval jumps right back into the mix just one month after suffering a decision loss to Pantoja in the co-headliner of UFC 296 this past months. The setback snapped a three-fight winning streak that gave him his first title shot.

UFC Mexico City is scheduled to take place on Feb. 24 at Arena CDMX In Mexico City and air on ESPN+.

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