Valentina Shevchenko shares ideal location for Alexa Grasso trilogy
Valentina Shevchenko wants to travel for her third (and potentially) final fight with Alexa Grasso. This past Saturday, Shevchenko fought to a split draw against Grasso at Noche UFC, the first-ever event held to commemorate Mexican Independence Day. In her post-fight interview, the former UFC champion thought that the draw was due to the judges feeling ‘pressure’ to deliver a favored result to her foe.
“I think it really was 3-2 on my side, but the judges, I think felt a little pressure because it is Mexican Independence Day,” said Shevchenko to UFC commentator Daniel Cormier. “…In a fair fight, in a fair competition, victory would be mine.”
Considering how controversially this fight at Noche UFC ended, Valentina Shevchenko and Alexa Grasso were immediately tapped for a potential trilogy. As expected, the ‘Bullet’ was on board, but she has one request from the promotion regarding where it should happen. During an appearance on The MMA Hour with Ariel Helwani, Shevchenko explained why it was ‘fair’ to consider holding a trilogy with Grasso in her native Kyrgyzstan.
“I think it would be fair and very right to have next event in Kyrgyzstan on Independence Day of Kyrgyzstan [on August 31],” said Shevchenko. “It’s going to be very smart, because it has to be equal, right? We cannot do Mexican Independence Day twice. I think all the people in Kyrgyzstan, all the government in Kyrgyzstan, they will do everything possible to make it happen. That’s why I think if the UFC will want to do that, they will find a way to do that.
“In our fight, there were people from the government who flew in from Kyrgyzstan to the United States to watch and support me fighting, so it speaks a lot about that,” continued Shevchenko. “Our president of Kyrgyzstan, Sadyr Japarov, he is very in the sport. He’s very sport person, and it’s very important for me as an athlete to have this support from him as well. So, yeah, I think it’s going to be fair. Independence Day of Kyrgyzstan, in Kyrgyzstan, and I think it’s the very right time to do that.”
Despite having fighters such as Shevchenko representing Kyrgyzstan on its roster, the UFC has yet to hold an event in the country. That said, the promotion has traveled to untapped regions, so perhaps a trip to Kyrgyzstan is in order.
UFC CEO Dana White confirms trilogy is next
UFC CEO Dana White recently confirmed that Alexa Grasso vs. Valentina Shevchenko III was the ‘right thing to do’ after the split draw at Noche UFC. One of the things to sort out for the trilogy is when it would happen, especially since Shevchenko revealed she suffered an injury against Grasso.
The former UFC champion has a ‘comminuted fracture that requires surgery,’ which could see her sidelined for the next couple of months. White said he was fine with the tentative timeline she gave for a potential return.
“We’re comfortable with where [Shevchenko] is at as far as her injury,” said White after a recent episode of the Contender Series (video provided by MMA Fighting). “We’re comfortable with it. She probably starts striking again in three months or a little less.”
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