Melsik Baghdasaryan leaves UFC Saudi Arabia due to injury, Felipe Lima intervenes in the fight against Muhammad Naimov

Melsik Baghdasaryan will not fight this weekend.

The featherweight competitor announced on his social media that he had to withdraw from his fight against Muhammad Naimov, which was scheduled to take place on the main card of UFC Saudi Arabia on Saturday in Riyadh.

According to Baghdasaryan, he had a torn labrum in his left shoulder. Watch his Instagram Stories announcement below (archived by Eurosport).

News of Baghdasaryan’s withdrawal was first reported by MMA reporter Robert Tellez.

Baghdasaryan hasn’t had much luck making it to fight night in 2024. He has now missed three bookings this year, with fights against Hyder Amil and William Gomis also falling through. He has won three of his first four UFC fights, most recently defeating Tucker Lutz by unanimous decision in July 2023.

On Tuesday, the UFC announced that Baghdasaryan will be replaced by newcomer Felipe Lima (12-1). Eurosport was the first to report the new matchup.

Lima last fought at an Oktagon MMA show in July 2023. He scored a unanimous decision over Jonas Magard to capture a bantamweight title and win his 12th straight fight since losing his pro debut.

Oktagon MMA released a statement on social media saying they had released Lima from his contract, per existing terms, and wished him the best in his UFC debut.

Saturday’s UFC Saudi Arabia card has already seen major buzz. In the main event, former middleweight champion Robert Whittaker took on undefeated Khamzat Chimaev, but Chimaev was forced to withdraw due to illness and was replaced by Ikram Aliskerov.