UFC Fight Night: Rodríguez vs. Stephens (also known as UFC Fight Night 159 or UFC on ESPN+ 17) was a mixed martial arts event produced by the Ultimate Fighting Championship that took place on September 21, 2019 at Mexico City Arena in Mexico City, Mexico.
|UFC Fight Night: Rodríguez vs. Stephens|
|Promotion||Ultimate Fighting Championship|
|Date||September 21, 2019|
|Venue||Mexico City Arena|
|City||Mexico City, Mexico|
While not officially announced by the organization, the promotion was initially targeting a featherweight bout between former title challengers Brian Ortega and Chan Sung Jung to serve as the event headliner. However, promotion officials elected to go in another direction and a featherweight bout between The Ultimate Fighter: Latin America featherweight winner Yair Rodríguez and Jeremy Stephens served as the main event.
A women's strawweight bout between Istela Nunes and former Invicta FC Strawweight Champion Angela Hill was scheduled for the event. However, on August 12, it was reported that Nunes was removed from the card due to a failed drug test. She was replaced by Ariane Carnelossi.
Alex Perez was scheduled to face Sergio Pettis at the event. However, Perez pulled out of the bout on August 26 citing an injury. He was replaced by promotional newcomer Tyson Nam.
Marion Reneau was scheduled to face Irene Aldana at the event. However, Reneau pulled out of the bout on September 11 for undisclosed reasons. She was replaced by promotional newcomer Vanessa Melo. At the weigh-ins, Melo weighed in at 140 pounds, 4 pounds over the bantamweight non-title fight limit of 136. She was fined 30% of her purse and her bout with Aldana proceeded at a catchweight.
|Main Card (ESPN+)|
|Featherweight||Yair Rodríguez||vs.||Jeremy Stephens||No Contest (accidental eye poke)||1||0:15||[a]|
|Women's Strawweight||Carla Esparza||def.||Alexa Grasso||Decision (majority) (28–28, 29–28, 29–28)||3||5:00|
|Flyweight||Askar Askarov||vs.||Brandon Moreno||Draw (split) (28–28, 29–28, 27–30)||3||5:00|
|Catchweight (140 lb)||Irene Aldana||def.||Vanessa Melo||Decision (unanimous) (30–26, 30–26, 30–26)||3||5:00|
|Featherweight||Steven Peterson||def.||Martin Bravo||KO (spinning backfist)||2||1:31|
|Preliminary Card (ESPN+)|
|Bantamweight||José Alberto Quiñónez||def.||Carlos Huachin||Decision (unanimous) (30–27, 30–27, 30–27)||3||5:00|
|Featherweight||Kyle Nelson||def.||Polo Reyes||TKO (punches)||1||1:36|
|Women's Strawweight||Angela Hill||def.||Ariane Carnelossi||TKO (doctor stoppage)||3||1:56|
|Flyweight||Sergio Pettis||def.||Tyson Nam||Decision (unanimous) (30–27, 30–27, 30–27)||3||5:00|
|Light Heavyweight||Paul Craig||def.||Vinicius Moreira||Submission (rear-naked choke)||1||3:19|
|Women's Bantamweight||Bethe Correia||def.||Sijara Eubanks||Decision (unanimous) (29–28, 29–28, 29–28)||3||5:00|
|Lightweight||Claudio Puelles||def.||Marcos Rosa Mariano||Decision (unanimous) (30–25, 30–25, 30–25)||3||5:00|
- ^ An accidental eye poke rendered Stephens unable to continue.
The following fighters received $50,000 bonuses.
- Fight of the Night: Carla Esparza vs. Alexa Grasso
- Performance of the Night: Steven Peterson and Paul Craig
- ^ a b Fernando Quiles Jr. (2019-09-22). "UFC Mexico City bonuses & attendance revealed". mmanews.com. Retrieved 2019-09-22.
- ^ Newswire (2019-05-12). "UFC announces dates for third, fourth quarter of 2019, including returns to Sacramento, San Antonio, Mexico City". mmafighting.com. Retrieved 2019-05-12.
- ^ Ryan Harkness (2019-05-12). "UFC reveals event schedule for remainder of 2019". mmamania.com. Retrieved 2019-05-12.
- ^ Adam Guillen Jr. (2019-07-15). "Brian Ortega vs Korean Zombie targeted for Fight Night event in Mexico City on Sept. 21". mmamania.com. Retrieved 2019-07-15.
- ^ Ariel Helwani (2019-07-26). "Yair Rodriguez to fight in native Mexico". espn.com. Retrieved 2019-07-27.
- ^ Guilherme Cruz (2019-08-12). "Istela Nunes out of UFC Mexico City with anti-doping violation". mmafighting.com. Retrieved 2019-08-13.
- ^ Redactie (2019-08-13). "Ariane Carnelossi replaces Istela Nunes against Angela Hill during UFC Mexico City". mmadna.nl. Retrieved 2019-08-13. (in Dutch)
- ^ Farah Hannoun (2019-08-26). "Alex Perez withdraws from UFC on ESPN+ 17 fight vs. Sergio Pettis in Mexico City". mmajunkie.usatoday.com. Retrieved 2019-08-26.
- ^ Redactie (27 August 2019). "Tyson Nam replaces Alex Perez against Sergio Pettis during UFC Mexico City". mmadan.nl. Retrieved 2019-08-28. (in Dutch)
- ^ John Morgan (2019-09-11). "Marion Reneau out of planned bout with Irene Aldana at next week's UFC on ESPN+ 17". mmajunkie.usatoday.com. Retrieved 2019-09-11.
- ^ Diego Ribas (2019-09-11). "Vanessa 'Miss Sympathy' replaces Marion Reneau to fight at UFC Mexico". esportes.yahoo.com. Retrieved 2019-09-11. (in Portuguese)
- ^ Alexander K. Lee (2019-09-20). "UFC Mexico City weigh-in results: Short-notice replacement Vanessa Melo misses weight by four pounds". mmafighting.com. Retrieved 2019-09-20.
- ^ "UFC Fight Night: Rodríguez vs. Stephens". Ultimate Fighting Championship. 14 May 2019. Retrieved 2019-09-16.