Image: BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS – OCTOBER 18: Jeremy Stephens reacts after the conclusion of round two of his featherweight bout against Yair Rodriguez during the UFC Fight Night event at TD Garden on October 18, 2019 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
The UFC has just released Jeremy Stephens, one of its most long-running veterans. This update comes courtesy of UFC Roster Watch. Jeremy “Lil Heathen” Stephens has been with the promotion for 15 years, accruing 34 fights under their banner during his tenure. However, he has been winless since his KO victory over Josh Emmett in 2018. Since then, Stephens has gone on a six-fight streak consisting of five losses and one no-contest. Most recently he lost to rising lightweight talent Mateusz Gamrot on July 17, 2021, who submitted him with a kimura in just 65 seconds.
The Iowa native first fought in the UFC on May 26, 2007, at lightweight, losing to current analyst Din Thomas by way of an armbar. Since then he has had his ups and downs, including a crushing uppercut KO victory over future UFC lightweight champion Rafael Dos Anjos. After a three-fight losing streak, Stephens would drop to featherweight in 2013. He would remain a perennial fringe contender and gatekeeper. Stephens had notable wins over competent fighters like Darren Elkins. However, against truly dangerous contenders, Stephens would often drop a loss after a respectable showing, losing to former lightweight champion Anthony Pettis, and the then-future featherweight champion Max Holloway, as well as current lightweight champion Charles “Do Bronx” Oliveria.
Jeremy Stephens: Nothing Left Moving
Despite never rising to the career accolades that some of his opponents would achieve, Stephens nevertheless leaves the UFC with an excellent highlight reel. As well as the aforementioned Dos Anjos KO, Stephens would stop Dennis Bermudez in his tracks with a flying knee and Do Hoo Choi with brutal ground and pound. All three had never been knocked out before they fought him. By the end of his career he would amass four Performance of the Night bonuses (three back in the period where they were called Knockout of the Night) and six Fight of the Night bonuses.
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