‘Best days behind her?’ – Valentina Shevchenko loses again in UFC title rematch, argues Bisping

Former UFC champion Michael Bisping talks about a "passive" and "maybe" over the hill Valentina Shevchenko.

By: Lucas Rezende | 3 months ago

Former UFC middleweight champion Michael Bisping does not seem to have much faith in former flyweight queen Valentina Shevchenko after Alexa Grasso dethroned ‘Bullet’ with an impressive performance earlier this year.

Michael Bisping wonders if Valentina Shevchenko is over the hill

In fact, now that the pair has a rematch scheduled for September, the ‘Count’ is willing to bet on the newly crowned champ to defeat Shevchenko again. On his YouTube channel (transcribed by MMA Fighting), Bisping wondered if the loss to Grasso could mean the end of Shevchenko’s peak, meaning that Grasso could very well be the favorite if the UFC runs their fight back.

“It might sound crazy, but I think Alexa is the better fighter. That doesn’t sound crazy to me at all. I thought Alexa looked really good. I think that Valentina Shevchenko has been a dominant force for so long, but everyone has their time. Everyone has their end. Everyone has their beginning of the end.”

“Is this the beginning of the end of Shevchenko?” Bisping said. “Are her best days behind her? I don’t know – maybe. Maybe she had an off night. Maybe Alexa Grasso is just a better fighter. I thought she looked very well. It certainly wasn’t a fluke.”

Has Shevchenko become too passive?

Although Bisping believes Valentina Shevchenko would lose to Grasso again, he hopes the former champion does not get offended by his comments. In fact, the Brit’s only gripe with Bullet’s seems to be the fact that she may have gotten too passive in the Octagon, which allowed a challenger such as Grasso to put on enough pressure to snatch the belt from Shevchenko’s hands.

“I’m a fan of Valentina, so this is not an insult, she (was) a dominant champion, and sometimes you start getting into the mind set, like George St-Pierre, that you get too passive in the fight, maybe a bit too defensive,” Bisping said. “She needs to go back to being that hungry killer. She needs to go forward and be the aggressor, as opposed to trying to counter all the time. But who am I to sit here and critique Shevchenko with the career she’s had.”

Shevchenko is set to rematch Grasso in September

Before the loss to Grasso, Valentina Shevchenko (23-4) was on an impressive nine-fight win streak, wit seven successful title defenses. During her reign, the 35-year-old year defeated notable names in the women’s flyweight division, such Jessica Andrade, Jennifer Maia, Katlyn Chookagian and Liz Carmouche, among others.

Meanwhile, Alexa Grasso (16-3) scored her fifth straight win to become the new champion, having defeated Kim Ji-Yeon, Maycee Barber, Joanne Wood, and Viviane Araujo before facing Shevchenko. The 29-year-old’s last loss took place in September 2019, when she dropped a majority decision to former strawweight champion Carla Esparza.

Now, Shevchenko and Grasso are scheduled to rematch at UFC Fight Night 227, on September 16, in Las Vegas, Nevada.

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About the author
Lucas Rezende
Lucas Rezende

Lucas Rezende is a Brazilian journalist and writer from Belem, Para. He has been covering MMA since 2012 and contributing with Bloody Elbow since March 2015. When not writing, Lucas also teaches English. In his free time, he enjoys reading, slapping the bass guitar and traveling.

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