UFN 159: Eye poke sees Rodriguez – Stephens end in No Contest

Yair Rodriguez and Jeremy Stephens showered by debris from crowd after fight ends in a No Contest 15 seconds in

The Mexico City crowd was hyped to see their country’s hottest MMA prospect step into the Octagon on Saturday night.

However, an accidental eye poke just 15 seconds in saw Yair Rodriguez’s clash with featherweight stalwart Jeremy Stephens end in a No Contest.

And boy did the locals let their displeasure be known.

After Stephens took the allotted five minutes to try and recover from Rodriguez’s stray fingers, it was clear the fight could not continue. Referee Herb Dean call the fight off and the Mexico City crowd hurled both boos and debris into the cage.

Stephens was showered by drinks and more as he was escorted from the cage into the back.

UFC play-by-play announcer Brendan Fitzgerald was forced to perform his duties from underneath his desk.

In post-fight comments, Rodriguez hinted he thought Stephens was faking the severity of his eye injury. Stephens retorted by saying he would happily run the fight back in as little as two weeks’ time once has recovered.

These were some sorry scenes, but it only makes the fighting world want to see this contest even more.

 

Carla Esparza edges decision to defeat Mexico’s Alexa Grasso

Carla Esparza survived two scary moments in her showdown with Alexa Grasso to take a contentious majority decision on enemy territory.

The opening two rounds, Esparza asserted her grappling dominance by scoring multiple takedowns and displaying some solid top control over Grasso.

But in the final round, Grasso came close to finishing Esparza on two different occasions.

Grasso sent Esparza reeling with a stunning left hook and a barrage of punches, but failed to truly capitalise on the situation and finish the fight.

She also did well to rebuff Esparza’s takedown attempts in the third, but when she was finally taken down in the third, Grasso scrambled to snatch an armbar which had Esparza’s arms contorted in all kind of inhumane ways. Esparza displayed a ridiculous amount of grit to avoid tapping out and eventually found her way out of this precarious position to leave the fight to the judges’ scorecards.

 

UFC Fight Night: Yair Rodriguez vs. Jeremy Stephens

Featherweight: Yair Rodríguez vs. Jeremy Stephens ended in a No Contest (accidental eye poke) at 0:15 of round one
Women’s Strawweight: Carla Esparza def. Alexa Grasso by majority decision after three rounds
Flyweight: Brandon Moreno vs. Askar Askarov ended in a split draw after three rounds
Catchweight: Irene Aldana def. Vanessa Melo by unanimous decision after three rounds
Featherweight: Steven Peterson def. Martín Bravo by KO (spinning backfist) at 1:31 of round two
Bantamweight: José Alberto Quiñónez def. Carlos Huachin Decision by unanimous decision after three rounds
Featherweight: Kyle Nelson def. Polo Reyes by TKO (punches) at 1:36 of round one
Women’s Strawweight: Angela Hill def. Ariane Carnelossi by TKO (doctor stoppage) at 1:56 of round three
Flyweight: Sergio Pettis def. Tyson Nam Decision by unanimous decision after three rounds
Light Heavyweight: Paul Craig def. Vinicius Moreira by Submission (rear-naked choke) 3:19 at round one
Women’s Bantamweight: Bethe Correia def. Sijara Eubanks by unanimous decision after three rounds
Lightweight: Claudio Puelles def. Marcos Rosa Mariano by unanimous decision after three rounds

Jake Hughes

Jake Hughes

Jake Hughes is an MMA writer who has covered the sport since 2013 for publications such as Vice Sports, Fightland, Sherdog and now Fighters Only, where he serves as freelance digital editor.