Shevchenko entered the fight with six successful title defenses as flyweight champion. “Bullet” has clearly established herself as one of the most dominant champions in mixed martial arts (MMA) history.
However, she had her hands full with Santos tonight. Santos, the No. 4-ranked flyweight in the world, earned a title nod after putting together four-straight victories. Inside the Octagon tonight, she proved exactly why she deserved to share the cage with Shevchenko.
Santos outgrappled Shevchenko on the mat like nobody else has, with several close calls on rear-naked choke attempts. However, Shevchenko was able to pocket some rounds with smart striking, distance management, and strong groundwork of her own in the fifth round.
A nasty cut on Santos’ eye for half the fight certainly played a factor as well. Despite giving Shevchenko the most competitive fight of her championship run, Santos still came up just short, dropping a split decision loss to the champion.
Check out how the MMA community reacted to Shevchenko holding off Santos here.
How did you score the UFC 275 co-main event between Valentina Shevchenko and Taila Santos?