ELMONT, N.Y. -- A highly anticipated featherweight main event between Yair Rodriguez and Brian Ortega ended unfortunately on Saturday when Ortega could not continue after appearing to dislocate his right shoulder.
The injury occurred at 4 minutes, 11 seconds of the opening round. Ortega had just taken Rodriguez to the ground and was pulling his right arm away from an armbar attempt Rodriguez threw up from his back. The submission was not tight at all, and Ortega did not appear to be in any danger, but the movement of pulling his arm back looked to cause the apparent dislocation. Ortega injured the same shoulder in 2016 and underwent surgery.
Officially, the circumstances resulted in a TKO victory for Rodriguez.
The fight, which headlined UFC Fight Night inside UBS Arena, carried high stakes in the 145-pound division. An impressive win by either Rodriguez (14-3) or Ortega (15-3) could have produced a title shot against Alexander Volkanovski. Josh Emmett (18-2) is also in the running for a title fight.
UFC Long Island results
Strawweight: Amanda Lemos (12-2-1, 6-2 UFC) def. Michelle Waterson-Gomez (18-10, 6-6 UFC) by submission (Watch on ESPN+)
A finishing sequence that could have been a disaster ended up being a lesson in sportsmanship.
Lemos jumped a guillotine choke in the second round and Waterson-Gomez tapped out -- on the opposite side of referee Kevin MacDonald, who did not see the tap. Lemos stopped choking even though MacDonald did not step in to stop the fight. But Waterson-Gomez admitted she tapped and MacDonald called the bout via submission at 1:48 of the second.
"She ducks her head a lot and I'm taller," Lemos said in her postfight interview. "I've trained the guillotine hundreds of thousands of times for this fight and it paid off."
Coming in, ESPN had Lemos ranked No. 9 and Waterson-Gomez ranked No. 10 in the world at 115 pounds. This was arguably the biggest win of Lemos' career, given Waterson-Gomez's name.
Lemos landed some hard right hands in the first round, while Waterson-Gomez picked up a takedown late in the round. In the second, Lemos was back to landing good right hands until another Waterson-Gomez takedown attempt. This time, Lemos stuffed the attempt and jumped on Waterson-Gomez's neck with the choke.
Lemos, 35, has won six of her past seven fights. The Brazilian fighter was coming off a loss to former women's strawweight champion Jessica Andrade in April. Waterson-Gomez, a 36-year-old New Mexico resident, has dropped four of five. She is a former Invicta FC women's atomweight champion.
Welterweight: Li Jingliang (19-7, 11-5 UFC) def. Muslim Salikhov (18-3, 5-2 UFC) by TKO (Watch on ESPN+)
Li Jingliang wins via knockout after landing a huge right hook on Muslim Salikhov.
Li's first win in 18 months came emphatically, as he knocked out Salikhov with a pair of straight rights at 4:38 of the second round.
The fight was close leading up to the finish. Both welterweights had some success in the striking exchanges. Salikhov scored a takedown in the first round but could not control Li on the floor. It was shaping up to be a difficult fight to score until Li put him away. He slipped Salikhov a left hand and returned with a beautiful right-hand counter. After Salikhov backed up to the fence, Li dropped another right hand to the chin, which led to the finish.
It was Li's first appearance since a lopsided loss to Khamzat Chimaev last October. The Chinese welterweight had alternated wins and losses in his previous five bouts. Meanwhile, Salikhov suffered his first loss in the UFC since 2017.
Men's flyweight: Matt Schnell (16-6 1 NC, 6-4 1 NC UFC) def. Sumudaerji (16-5, 3-2 UFC) by submission (Watch on ESPN+)
It looked like Schnell was done. Sumudaerji was sniping him with a beautiful straight left hand and had him on wobbly legs several times.
Schnell's chin held up, though -- and then some. Schnell put Sumudaerji on the back foot with a combination, landed a takedown and got into mount. Seconds later, he wrapped Sumudaerji into a triangle choke for a submission finish at 4:24 of the second round.
"I think he got tired from beating on me and I was able to capitalize," Schnell said in his postfight interview.
The sequence was one of the most incredible of the year. Sumudaerji had Schnell in big trouble on the feet until that takedown. But Schnell got into mount and destroyed Sumudaerji with elbows and punches from that dominant position. Sumudaerji, at that point a bloody mess, managed to sweep into top position, but Schnell countered that with the triangle and Sumudaerji was choked unconscious.
"A lot of people count me out, but I'm a bad man," Schnell said.
Sumudaerji was hurting Schnell with those left hands and some sharp right elbows. He dropped Schnell twice in the second round until Schnell's incredible comeback. Schnell nearly got an omoplata submission at one point, but Sumudaerji slammed him down to the canvas.
Schnell, 32, has just one loss in his past four fights. The Texas resident has just two defeats in his previous nine contests going back to 2017. Sumudaerji, a 26-year-old Chinese fighter, had a three-fight winning streak snapped.
Men's featherweight: Shane Burgos (15-3, 8-3 UFC) def. Charles Jourdain (13-5-1, 4-4-1 UFC) by majority decision (Watch on ESPN+)
Burgos, of Bronx, New York, squeaked out a majority decision over Jourdain in a fun back-and-forth fight. Two judges had it 29-28 for Burgos, while a third scored it a 28-28 draw.
Burgos is known for his entertaining striking, but he did his best work against Jourdain on the ground. He took the Canadian fighter down and took his back in the first and second rounds. He came close to securing a rear-naked choke in the second.
Jourdain roared back, however, in the third. He defended Burgos' takedown attempts and lit him up on the feet with boxing combinations, kicks and elbows in the clinch. He appeared to hurt Burgos with a flurry with about a minute left.
According to UFC Stats, Jourdain out-landed Burgos in total strikes 169 to 78 but nevertheless took the loss. He is now 4-4-1 in the UFC. Burgos, who said Saturday's event was the final fight on his current UFC contract, improves to 8-3 in the Octagon.
Women's flyweight: Lauren Murphy (16-5, 8-5 UFC) def. Miesha Tate (19-9, 6-6 UFC) by unanimous decision (Watch on ESPN+)
Tate, one of the most popular fighters in women's MMA, was positioned to get a potential title shot with a win in her new division. But Murphy would have none of that in Long Island.
Murphy damaged Tate, the former UFC women's bantamweight champion, in every round and defended all her takedowns in a unanimous decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28) win in the UFC Long Island main card opener. By the end of the bout, Tate had bleeding from her nose and a nasty hematoma under her left eye.
ESPN had Murphy ranked No. 4 in the world at women's flyweight and defended her spot admirably.
"I've dreamed about moments like this my whole career," Murphy said. "When I'm healthy and focused, I'm a force to be reckoned with in this division."
Murphy set the tone early by shirking Tate's takedown attempts and looking strong in the clinch. A jab that caused bleeding from Tate's nose didn't hurt, either. Murphy took Tate down in the second round and landed hard elbows in the clinch, plus some ground-and-pound. The offense left Tate with bad swelling under her left eye, although Tate did land a huge elbow in the clinch late in the round.
In the third, Murphy landed more elbows in the clinch and defended Tate's takedowns again. Murphy called out the winner of a fight coming up in September at UFC Paris between Jessica Andrade and Manon Fiorot.
Murphy, 38, rebounded from a fourth-round TKO loss to champion Valentina Shevchenko at UFC 266 last September. The Alaska-born Texas resident has won seven of her past nine fights.
"It's gonna take more than a little ass-whoopin' to keep me away from the championship," Murphy said of her loss to Shevchenko. "I'm not gonna stop until I'm the champion."
Tate, 35, dropped down to flyweight for this fight after falling to Ketlen Vieira at bantamweight last November. After five years off last summer, the Las Vegas resident came out of retirement, beating Marion Reneau. Tate was the UFC women's bantamweight champion in 2016, beating Holly Holm.
Middleweight: Punahele Soriano (9-2, 3-2 UFC) def. Dalcha Lungiambula (11-5, 2-4 UFC) by TKO (Watch on ESPN+)
Punahele Soriano lands a perfectly placed left-handed punch to grab a knockout win over Dalcha Lungiambula.
Soriano came out for Round 2 against a compromised Lungiambula and wasted no time before finishing the fight, dropping the South African fighter with a straight left hand and swarming him with punches before referee Dan Miragliotta stopped it at 28 seconds. The first round had been competitive, with each man effectively countering the other's advances. But after the round ended with a grappling exchange, Lungiambula walked back to his corner while holding the right side of his torso, as there was visible damage to his ribcage.
Lungiambula started the second round with a head kick, but Soriano blocked it and responded with the left hand that quickly ended the fight and allowed the 29-year-old Hawaiian fighting out of Las Vegas to end a two-fight losing streak. Lungiambula, 34, has lost three fights in a row and four of his past five.
Men's bantamweight: Ricky Simón (20-3, 8-2 UFC) def. Jack Shore (16-1, 5-1 UFC) by submission (Watch on ESPN+)
Ricky Simon impresses with a heavy punch and arm-triangle submission against Jack Shore.
Simon won his fifth in a row emphatically, handing Shore the first loss of his career.
After a close Round 1, Simon delivered several game-changing highlights in the second. After failing on his first seven takedown attempts, he scored two of them early in the round, the second one a loud slam to the canvas. Shore did work his way back to his feet, but in an exchange near the cage, Simon landed a straight right hand that wobbled his opponent. Simon took the bout back to the canvas and finished it at 3:28 of the round with a head-and-arm triangle.
Simon, who is 29 and from Vancouver, Washington, has had finishes in three of his past four fights. Shore, a 27-year-old from Wales, had won his first five UFC bouts.
Men's featherweight: Bill Algeo (16-6, 3-2 UFC) def. Herbert Burns (11-4, 2-2 UFC) by second-round TKO (Watch on ESPN+)
Algeo survived multiple submission attempts from Burns en route to a finish at 1:50 of the second round. Referee Keith Peterson waved it off when Burns refused to stand up as Algeo stepped away to try to force Burns to.
The fight was almost stopped between the first and second rounds when Burns slowly worked back to his corner and appeared to tell his older brother, UFC welterweight Gilbert Burns, that he didn't want to continue. Burns eventually did make it out for the second round, but he looked hurt and exhausted and quickly tried to pull guard on Algeo.
It was a nice victory for Algeo, as he was forced to work out of a tight triangle choke by Burns in the opening minutes. Once Algeo worked out of the threat, he was dominant from top position, hurting Burns with punches and elbows. The win improves Algeo's UFC record to 3-2. He has won two in a row. -- Okamoto
Light heavyweight: Dustin Jacoby (18-5-1, 6-2-1 UFC) def. Da-Un Jung (15-3-1, 4-1-1 UFC) by first-round KO (Watch on ESPN+)
Dustin Jacoby catches Da-Un Jung with a powerful right hand and sends him down for the first-round knockout.
Nothing like a walk-off knockout on a Saturday afternoon.
Jacoby, of Denver, scored a right-handed knockout over Jung at the 3:13 mark of the opening round. The fight had been competitive in the standup to that point, but one right hand down the middle was all it took for Jacoby to get the 11th knockout of his career.
Jacoby went into the bout as the UFC's No. 15-ranked light heavyweight. Quietly, he's been outstanding since signing with the promotion in 2020 off of Dana White's Contender Series. He's unbeaten in seven UFC appearances with a record of 6-0-1. This was his second victory of 2022.
Jung loses for the first time since 2015. -- Okamoto
Middleweight: Dustin Stoltzfus (14-4, 1-3 UFC) def. Dwight Grant (11-6, 3-5 UFC) by unanimous decision (Watch on ESPN+)
Dustin Stoltzfus lifts Dwight Grant and slams him onto the mat on his way to a unanimous decision victory.
Stoltzfus finally picked up his first win in the UFC with a dominant three-round performance. All three judges scored the fight for Stoltzfus by 29-28.
It's Stoltzfus' first win in four appearances in the Octagon. He got off to a bit of a slow start, as both he and Grant searched for range in the opening round. Stoltzfus got going in the second frame, though, as he took Grant down and threatened with a rear-naked choke. The third round was all Stoltzfus. He picked Grant up, walked him to the center of the cage and emphatically slammed him to the canvas, where he controlled Grant for the rest of the bout.
Grant, 37, has lost three in a row and four of his past five. He is 3-5 overall in the UFC. -- Okamoto
Strawweight: Emily Ducote (12-6, 1-0 UFC) def. Jessica Penne (14-7, 3-4 UFC) by unanimous decision (Watch on ESPN+)
The 28-year-old Ducote looked impressive in her UFC debut, out-pointing Penne on the judges' scorecards 30-27, 29-28 and 29-28.
Ducote went to work on Penne's lead leg early with kicks, and she kept it up throughout the fight. Penne could barely put weight on it by the third round, which robbed her of mobility and power. She fought through it but clearly lost the last round and was even staggered at one point by a right hand. She was unsuccessful on all eight of her takedown attempts, according to UFC Stats data.
Penne, 39, sees a two-fight win streak snapped. It was her first winning streak in the UFC. Ducote has now won three in a row, two of those coming in Invicta FC. -- Okamoto