Featherweight staple Jeremy Stephens will test to get back into the divisional earn column later tonight (Sat., Sept. 21, 2019) at UFC Fight Evening 159 reside on ESPN+ from inside of Arena Ciudad de Mexico in Mexico Metropolis, when he can take on promising contender and prime-flight finisher Yair Rodriguez.
Stephens, who is coming off losses to former featherweight champion Jose Aldo and streaking Russian Zabit Magomedsharipov, will be headlining his third UFC celebration considering that the beginning of 2018. That usually means UFC trusts “Lil Heathen” to get the task finished when it matters most, and matching him up in opposition to a perilous striker like Rodriguez will create even extra fireworks later on tonight.
But with so a lot on the line in his return to the Octagon how precisely did Stephens prepare for UFC Mexico Town? Owning UFC lightweight contender Tony Ferguson in his camp and forcing him to press himself physically most likely didn’t harm.
“We’re chilling out, looking at ‘Rocky IV,’ and he’s like, ‘Let’s hit this operate,’” Stephens explained of Ferguson in the course of UFC Mexico City’s media working day previously this week (h/t MMA Junkie).” I imagined he was (expletive) joking. I’m like, ‘OK, we’re not likely to run. He’s exhausted.’ Guaranteed plenty of, midnight hits, and we go off on this operate.
“It’s like 1 in the morning, and I’m operating up this hill, and he’s like, ‘Bro, I need you to dash up this (expletive) hill, bro. Anything you have got.’ I’m like, ‘OK.’ I’m worn out. I essentially ran in the early morning and then went and skilled with him.”
Fortunately for Stephens, Ferguson’s motivation didn’t prevent there. He presented the 33-yr-previous veteran a thing he could not uncover any place else.
“So I’m operating up this hill, and ‘El Cucuy,’ the boogeyman, is like, ‘I’m likely to get you! I’m likely to get you!’” Stephens claimed. “I’m (expletive) functioning my ass off, bro. He’s in fact coming! He’s coming up the hill. He’s trying to chase me. He’s like, ‘Don’t let me catch you! I’m going to get you!’
“The boogeyman is screaming at me. Like, what the (expletive)?”
Acquiring competed in UFC because 2007 Stephens has been about many fighters in the course of countless training camps. But to educate alongside the likes of “El Cucuy” primary up to just one of the most essential fights of his profession Stephens seems extra all set than at any time to demonstrate his worthy of.
“Tremendous practical experience,” Stephens stated. “I had a smile on my encounter the whole time I sprinted up that hill. He gave me the finest compliment I believe anyone could give me. He states, ‘Man, you’re in (expletive) phenomenal form.’
“For ‘El Cucuy’ to convey to you that 6 weeks out from a struggle? We’re ready, bro.”
Remember, MMAmania.com will supply Reside spherical-by-spherical, blow-by-blow protection of the total UFC Fight Evening 159 party this Saturday (click on right here), starting with the ESPN+ “Prelims” at five p.m. ET and continuing on with the eight p.m. ET principal card.