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FIGHT CLUB | Feb 22

UFC Fight Night Headlines Two Brutal US vs Mexico Rematches

Expect Bloodshed When Moreno, Royval, Ortega, and Rodriguez Top the UFC Mexico City Fight Card This Weekend

UFC Fight Night Headlines Two Brutal US vs Mexico Rematches
Brandon Moreno and Brandon Royval are facing off during the UFC Fight/Eyepix/ NurPhoto via AFP

Mexico vs USA in the Octagon, Who You Got? 🤩

Moreno could have the momentum, five-round experience, and skill set to have his hand raised…

As diehard fans of octagon violence, we all strive for one-punch knockouts, suffocating submissions, and dominant performances. But the reality is, more often than we appreciate, we’re left with more questions than answers following high-profile UFC bouts.

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This sentiment couldn’t be truer as we head into UFC Mexico City this weekend, where the main and co-main events present rematches between Brandon Moreno and Brandon Royval and Yair Rodriguez and Brian Ortega.

 

Moreno vs Royval 1 – UFC 255, 2020

In their first meeting way back during the wretched time we know as ‘the COVID-19 pandemic’, Moreno and Royval were equally climbing the flyweight rankings at a steady pace, but when the two met at UFC 255, it was the Mexican representative who walked out with a dub.

Unfortunately, Royval suffered a shoulder injury mid-fight, thus allowing Moreno to win the contest via ground and pound without much kickback.


Whether Royval accepts the loss or not, unlike his fellow American compadre, Ortega, he wasn’t gifted a no-contest because the injury wasn’t recognized before the fight was finished.

 

The Rematch: Moreno vs Royval II – UFC Mexico City, February 24, 2024

We’re just two sleeps out from the rematch and boy, it’s difficult to ignore Moreno’s evolution and experience since this first bout. He took a few solid cracks to the jaw last time out, and the fight was competitive, but the BetUS UFC odds have placed the fighting pride of Mexico as a heavy favorite in this UFC fight for a reason, and I believe the price is justified.

Don’t let the soft-voiced Lego collector that stands at 5 feet seven inches tall fool you! No, no, once that octagon door closes, you’re looking at a two-time flyweight champion who barely lost his title to Alexandre Pantoja last August via split decision.

In front of a supporting Mexican crowd and with the potential to return straight back into the title picture, Moreno could have the momentum, five-round experience, and skill set to have his hand raised on Saturday night.

 

Rodriguez vs Ortega 1 – UFC on ABC 3, 2022

We received four minutes and 11 seconds the last time these featherweight nutcases fought, but sh*t, those damn injuries got us again. Sure, it didn’t live up to the UFC rumors and hype of being a Fight of the Year contender, but freak injuries are a b*tch, and what do you know, it was another shoulder injury that led us to this weekend in Mexico City.


When the UFC news broke that Ortega needed surgery and would be sidelined extensively, he became an afterthought. However, Rodriguez lived up to his word: “We can run it back anytime,” and in his long-awaited return, we get the previously touted FOTY candidate when “T-City” and “El Pantera” do battle in front of a hyped Mexican crowd.

 

The Rematch: Rodriguez vs Ortega II – UFC Mexico City, February 24, 2024

Ortega parted ways with his girlfriend Tracy Cortez – if you know, you know – and with this decision-making alone, I’m questioning his fight IQ. Nah, I’m only playing, but still, a nearly two-year layoff isn’t easy to overcome, and we can’t be certain how he’ll handle such a high-level opponent in his return.

America’s clash with Mexico in rematches starts in the co-main, and it’s guaranteed to deliver bloodshed. Despite the doubts around Ortega, looking at the dog price is oh so tempting, especially when we consider the fact he was in an advantageous top position before the injury occurred last time out.

Rodriguez’s takedown defense will always be in question, as he’s primarily a striker, and for this reason, I’ll side with America spoiling the Mexican party on Saturday night – in the co-main, at least.

 

Next Up: Topuria and Pantoja

The Arena CDMX will be the host of rematches involving shoulder injuries, and if all goes to plan, should the winners of each respective bout put on a show, Pantoja, the flyweight king, and the newly crowned featherweight champ, Ilia Topuria, could be just around the corner.

Either way and no matter how the results pan out, whichever direction the matchmaking blocks fall, I’m here for every possible outcome… JUST BLEED BABY!

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