Amir Albazi out, Brandon Moreno now rematches Brandon Royval at UFC Mexico City

Former UFC flyweight champ Brandon Moreno now has a new, yet familiar opponent for his next outing.

Originally scheduled to face Amir Albazi on Feb. 24, Moreno (21-7-2 MMA, 9-4-2 UFC) will now face former title challenger Brandon Royval in the new main event.

The event takes place at Mexico City Arena in Mexico City, Mexico, and airs live on ESPN+. The promotion officially announced the change Thursday.

In a statement posted to X, Albazi explained that a neck injury led to his removal from the fight.

“I have been dealing with a serious neck injury the past weeks,” Albazi wrote. “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.”

In their first meeting at UFC 255, Moreno defeated Royval (15-7 MMA, 5-3 UFC) after a nasty shoulder injury led to the end of the fight in the first round. Now, Moreno and Royval will run it back 39 months later in the UFC’s return to Mexico.

Moreno will be fighting for the first time since dropping his flyweight title to Alexandre Pantoja by split decision at UFC 290 in July. Royval was Pantoja’s first title challenger at UFC 296, but ended up on the wrong side of a unanimous decision. Coincidentally, Moreno weighed in as the backup fighter incase something went wrong at the last minute.

With the change, the UFC event on Feb. 24 in Mexico City includes:

  • Brandon Moreno vs. Brandon Royval

  • Brian Ortega vs. Yair Rodriguez

  • Edgar Chairez vs. Daniel Lacerda

  • Victor Altamirano vs. Felipe dos Santos

  • Sam Hughes vs. Yazmin Jauregui

  • Chris Duncan vs. Manuel Torres

  • Raul Rosas Jr. vs. Ricky Turcios

  • Denys Bondar vs. Luis Rodriguez

  • Muhammad Naimov vs. Erik Silva

  • Francisco Prado vs. Daniel Zellhuber

  • Raoni Barcelos vs. Jose Quinonez

  • Claudio Puelles vs. Fares Ziam

Story originally appeared on MMA Junkie