Valentina Shevchenko Details Leg Surgery That Kept Her Out Of UFC 251

Valentina Shevchenko has spoken out on the leg injury that forced her UFC 251 removal.

Shevchenko was scheduled to put her UFC women’s flyweight championship on the line against Joanne Calderwood on June 6. While the card is scheduled to take place inside Perth Arena, many are questioning the status of the event. With the coronavirus pandemic impacting the world of sports, many UFC events are in question.

Shevchenko Details Leg Injury Forcing UFC 251 Removal

One bout that has been removed from the UFC 251 card is Shevchenko vs. Calderwood but it isn’t due to the COVID-19 crisis. Speaking to ESPN‘s Ariel Helwani, Shevchenko confirmed that she underwent surgery for her injured leg.

“I was hoping [the injury] would heal by itself, but when it started to frustrate me a little bit, doctors advised me to have surgery,” Shevchenko told Ariel Helwani during an Instagram live chat on Thursday. “They said it can heal by itself but it will take time, a longer time. They advised for faster recovery to have surgery.

“I don’t want to spend a whole year not doing anything. I’m not that kind of person. I want to get back in fighting shape and do my job.”

UFC 251 would’ve marked the fourth time Shevchenko put her UFC women’s flyweight title on the line. “Bullet” has had successful title defenses against Katlyn Chookagian, Liz Carmouche, and Jessica Eye. Shevchenko is riding a five-fight winning streak and many believe she has the potential to rule the women’s 125-pound division for many years to come.

Shevchenko hasn’t suffered a loss since Sept. 2017. It was a split decision defeat to Amanda Nunes in a failed bid for the women’s bantamweight championship. Shevchenko strongly believes that she should’ve received the nod from the judges on that night. “Bullet” finally captured UFC gold back in Dec. 2018, defeating Joanna Jedrzejczyk via unanimous decision to become the second UFC women’s flyweight title holder.