Dana White confirmed today on Sportscentre that there will be a new flyweight champion crowned at UFC 231 when Joanna Jedrzejczyk does battle with Valentina Shevchenko in Toronto, Canada. The promotion is also working on finalizing Max Holloway defending his featherweight championship against Brian Ortega in the headliner.
There has been buzz about this fight being made ever since Nicco Montano was stripped of the title for failing to make weight at UFC 228, with both women expressing interest in the bout. The UFC acted swiftly and the flyweight division will move forward. This time, you can expect much closer odds in the title match than a -1300 favorite being anywhere on the ticket. In fact, it is anybody’s guess on what the odds for this flyweight showdown will look like when oddsmakers present their findings in the near future.
Both Shevchenko and Jedrzejczyk believed that stripping Montano was the right thing to do, with Valentina accusing Montano of intentionally sabotaging herself to avoid fighting her, and with Joanna deciding to give Montano a lecture on what it means to be a fighter and a champion in the world’s largest MMA promotion:
“Man, I paid the ultimate price, but I was on weight November 2017, and I would do this the same because, for me, it’s a shame for us as fighters, athletes, and champions to not be on weight,” Jedrzejczyk said. “So, man, we need real and dedicated fighters and champions in the UFC. It’s simply the best organization in the world. And there’s no space and time for bullshit like this.
Neither Jedrzejczyk or Shevchenko have missed weight or even pulled out of a fight in the UFC, so when Dana White and these two elite fighters say they will show up at UFC 231 in the Scotiabank Arena, you can take it to the bank.
What is your early prediction? Who will be the new UFC flyweight champion? Joanna Jedrzejczyk or Valentina Shevchenko?