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UFC on ESPN+ 17: Rodriguez vs. Stephens predictions

Rodriguez will have an entire country in his corner

The UFC is in Mexico City this weekend for UFC on ESPN+ 17 and an interesting featherweight matchup with No. 7 Yair Rodriguez (11-2-0) and No. 8 Jeremy Stephens (28-16-0) in the main event.

Kenai Andrews checks in with his thoughts on the main card.

MAIN CARD (8PM ET/5PM PT) 

MARTIN BRAVO (11-2-0) VS. STEVEN PETERSON (17-9-0)

Andrews: Both have lost to Alex Caceres in an interesting sidetone. I’m going with the hometown boy to edge out the more experienced Peterson.

Andrews Prediction:  Martin Bravo via UD

#10 IRENE ALDANA (10-5-0) VS. VANESSA MELO (10-5-0)

Andrews: Melo missed weight and is making her debut. Other than weight, Aldana has all of the other advantages and her style should negate the weight as well. Plus she is looking to atone for the loss to Pennington.

Andrews Prediction: Irene Aldana via UD

#9 BRANDON MORENO (15-5-0) VS. ASKAR ASKAROV (10-0-0)

Andrews: Moreno is welcoming Askarov to the octagon. Moreno has some good experience in the UFC, while Askarov is bringing an impressive finish rate with him. Have to go with experience here with Moreno.

Andrews Prediction: Brandon Moreno via UD

#8 CARLA ESPARZA (14-8-1) VS. ALEXA GRASSO (11-2-0)

Andrews: Tough matchup for Esparza. She needs to get in deep from the beginning and get the fight to the ground, but Grasso will be ready to pile up the points on the feet.

Andrews Prediction: Alexa Grasso via UD

MAIN EVENT

#7 YAIR RODRIGUEZ (11-2-0) VS. #8 JEREMY STEPHENS (28-16-0) 

Andrews: Rodriguez has the knack for productive flamboyance which he needs because Stephens will try to get the fight to the ground. He will overcome the grit and take a page from Stephens with a grinding decision win.

Andrews Prediction: Yair Rodriguez via UD

@kenaiandrews

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ExtrafeaturenewsUFC

Kenai is a former Postmedia Network online news and sports editor. He is the Editor-in-Chief for MMA Crossfire.
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