Sean O’Malley will fight at UFC 264 after all.
MMA Fighting confirmed with sources with knowledge of the new booking that a matchup between O’Malley (13-1) and UFC newcomer Kris Moutinho (9-4) is set for next Saturday’s pay-per-view in Las Vegas. Moutinho steps in on short notice for an injured Louis Smolka, following a number of high-profile fighters volunteering their services as a potential replacement to face O’Malley.
On Wednesday, O’Malley hinted that a matchup with Ricky Simon was a possibility, but later announced on a Twitch stream that he would be fighting Moutinho.
Moutinho has competed primarily for Classic Entertainment & Sports MMA. He has won two straight fights, most recently defeating Andrew Salas by third-round submission at a Cage Fury Fighting Championships show on May 28.
O’Malley seeks to build on a third-round knockout of Thomas Almeida at UFC 260 in March. That victory put O’Malley back in the win column after suffering his first pro loss against Marlon Vera at UFC 252 last August. He is 5-1 in the UFC so far.
It is expected that O’Malley’s bout will remain on the UFC 264 main card, which is headlined by a trilogy bout between Dustin Poirier and Conor McGregor.
Guilherme Cruz contributed to this report.