Valentina Shevchenko has her next flyweight title defense lined up when she takes on former strawweight champ Jéssica Andrade at UFC 261.
ESPN reported Wednesday that Dana White has confirmed Valentian Shevchenko will be defending her flyweight championship against Jéssica Andrade at UFC 261 on April 24. Thus far, this makes the first title bout on the card, but there is no word yet on what the headliner will be.
Valentina Shevchenko has swiftly developed a reputation as one of the most dominant champions in the UFC with her rule over the flyweight division. She has won every fight at 125 handedly and has a flawless 6-0 record in the division with half of the victories coming by stoppage. The highest-profile test for Shevchenko has been old rival Joanna Jędrzejczyk, but even Jędrzejczyk was unable to come close to preventing the Bullet from hitting her target of another victory. But once Jéssica Andrade decided to move up to the flyweight division last year, this made for an interesting new challenge for the champion.
Jéssica Andrade’s flyweight debut was a success. She became only the second woman to finish top contender Katlyn Chookagian, with the other of course being Shevchenko. Following Andrade’s victory, UFC President Dana White instantly began salivating at the idea of Andrade challenging the seemingly unstoppable Shevchenko.
“Andrade is a very, very good fight for (Shevchenko). That’s a tough fight,” White said at the UFC 255 post-fight press conference. “I mean, if you’re going to go out and be safe the first couple of rounds against somebody like Jennifer, what are you gonna do against Andrade? Andrade is going to bring her a lot of things she hasn’t seen before, not to mention the power that Andrade has. I mean, she just knocked (Kaitlyn Chookagian) out with a body shot. She’s a real problem for Shevchenko that she’s gonna have to figure out.”
We will see how Valentina Shevchenko pairs her spy skills with her fighting skills in her attempt to halt the runaway train that is Jéssica “Bate Estaca” Andrade at UFC 261.
What’s your early prediction for this fight? Does Jéssica Andrade unseat Valentina Shevchenko or does Shevchenko pick up another successful flyweight title defense?