There hasn’t been much in terms of fight bookings when it comes to the UFC’s debut on ESPN, but it looks like a sure fire barnburner in the women’s flyweight division is heading to Phoenix.
Multiple sources have confirmed to mymmanews.com that a bout between Ashlee Evans-Smith and Lauren Murphy will take place at UFC on ESPN 1. The event will take place Feb. 17 at the Talking Stick Resort Arena in Phoenix, AZ.
Evans-Smith is looking to continue her winning ways in 2019. The “Rebel Girl” is coming off of a unanimous decision victory over Bec Rawlings at UFC 223 in April. After a 2-0 campaign in 2016 — which included wins over Marion Reneau and Veronica Macedo — Evans-Smith suffered back-to-back losses to Ketlen Vieira and Sarah Moras. The 31-year-old was scheduled to compete this past Friday night at the TUF 28 against the debuting Antonina Shevchenko, but an undisclosed injury forced Evans-Smith to withdraw from the contest.
Murphy will look to bounce back into the win column when she fights in her, now, home state of Arizona. “Lucky” was a contestant on TUF 26 to crown the first ever UFC women’s flyweight champion and lost a decision in her opening round bout with the eventual winner of the tournament, Nicco Montano. After a shuffling of the deck, Murphy got the chance to take on Barb Honchak at the TUF 26 Finale last December, picking up a split decision win in the process. The MMA Lab trained Murphy took on Sijara Eubanks at UFC Fight Night 131 in June and lost a unanimous decision.
Currently, no other fights have been reported or announced for the UFC’s ESPN debut.