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UFC Fight Night 202 has taken a hit at light heavyweight.
Makhmud Muradov (25-7 MMA, 3-1 UFC) on Thursday said a hand injury has forced him out of his scheduled fight against Misha Cirkunov (15-7 MMA, 6-5 UFC). Their bout was set for Feb. 26 at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas.
Muradov announced the news on his Instagram account.
“I want to share the sad news that, unfortunately, I injured my hand in training,” Muradov posted (translated). “After certain checks, it becomes clear how long the recovery process will take. I apologize to my opponent, the UFC and all my fans. I really wanted to fight on February 26, I was well prepared, unfortunately, the wound was also on our forehead. I would be happy if this fight is moved to March. Once again, I apologize to everyone, it’s a sport and in some cases we’re just weak. In Sha Allah we will recover and become stronger☝🏻”
It is not yet known if Cirkunov will stay on the card against a new opponent or if the matchup will be rebooked for a later date. The UFC has not made a formal announcement.
Cirkunov was looking to snap a two-fight skid. In March 2021, he was knocked out in the first round by Ryan Spann. This past October, he dropped a split decision to Krzysztof Jotko. After an eight-fight winning streak, including his first four in the UFC by stoppage, Cirkunov has dropped five of his past seven fights.
After a perfect 3-0 start to his UFC tenure, Muradov was trying to bounce back, as well. Wins over Alessio Di Chirico, Trevor Smith and Andrew Sanchez gave him a 14-fight winning streak. But in August, he was submitted by Gerald Meerschaert in the second round for his first loss since 2016.
With the change, the UFC Fight Night 202 lineup now includes:
Beneil Dariush vs. Islam Makhachev
Ignacio Bahamondes vs. Rong Zhu
Hannah Goldy vs. Jinh Yu Frey
Joel Alvarez vs. Arman Tsarukyan
Misha Cirkunov vs. TBA
Victor Altamirano vs. Carlos Hernandez
Terrance McKinney vs. Fares Ziam
Micheal Gillmore vs. Jonny Parsons
Priscila Cachoeira vs. Ji Yeon Kim
Josiane Nunes vs. Wu Yanan