A fight between Brian Ortega and Jeremy Stephens is no longer being discussed as a potential headliner for UFC San Antonio on July 20.
That’s according to ESPN’s Ariel Helwani who states that there was talk of booking that featherweight contest. However, Ortega is not healthy enough to accept a fight at the moment. Ortega had suffered a number of injuries in his featherweight title fight with Max Holloway in December. Among them were a broken nose and broken hand.
However, he claimed last month that he was all clear and looking to return in the summer. But given the latest news, it seems “T-City” may still need some more time before returning to the Octagon. Helwani added that he preferred Ortega facing Stephens rather than Zabit Magomedsharipov. That fight was also reportedly in the works, but for UFC 240.
Ortega was undefeated before his TKO loss to Holloway, having defeated the likes of Renato Moicano, Cub Swanson, and Frankie Edgar en-route to a title shot. As for Stephens, he is currently on a two-fight losing run after defeats to Jose Aldo and Magomedsharipov. “Lil’ Heathen” was, however, on a three-fight winning streak before that with wins over Gilbert Melendez, Doo Ho Choi, and Josh Emmett.