Clinical Shevchenko labeled ‘demonic’ by UFC boss White after title win over bloodied Andrade as fans demand Nunes trilogy (VIDEO)
‘Bullet’ cemented her status as the undisputed queen of the women’s UFC flyweight ranks as the Kyrgyz-born star overpowered Brazil’s Andrade in their title clash in front of a full house of fans at the VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena in Jacksonville, Florida.
Heavy favorite Shevchenko enjoyed significant takedown success throughout the one-sided contest, ultimately finishing former strawweight champion Andrade in the second round after dumping her to the mat and landing a heavy series of blows from crucifix position.
Referee Dan Miragliotta stepped in to put the bloodied Andrade out of her misery as Shevchenko claimed yet another victim and earned her fifth title defense at 125lbs.
"I like to surprise people, I can do everything,” Shevchenko said in the octagon when asked why she had opted for a grappling strategy as her foundation for victory.
“I wanted to come and destroy my opponent, sorry Jessica it was my plan… Everyone’s asking to fight me, here I am.”
The 33-year-old fired off an ominous warning to her rivals, telling anyone who was searching for a chink in her armor that they would not find one.
“Don’t waste your time, there is no one [weakness],” said Shevchenko, delivering the deadpan line and breaking into a trademark celebratory 'lezginka' dance in the octagon.
After number one contender Andrade was sent packing, attentions turned to what comes next for the Kyrgyz-Peruvian star, who is on a seven-fight hot streak and has not lost since her contentious split decision defeat to Nunes in their bantamweight title fight rematch in September 2017, which put the Brazilian at 2-0 in their meetings.
For many, the most logical next fight is a third meeting between the pair – with Nunes still all-conquering at 135lbs and featherweight.
Shevchenko declined to name who she wanted next in her post-fight press conference, but admitted that Nunes could be a possibility somewhere along the line.
Shevchenko at the press conference says that she doesn't want to name names of future opponents.She doesn't like to do it. She just wants to be honest in what she does and wants to stay in her weight class to fight the best challengers.— Aaron Bronsteter (@aaronbronsteter) April 25, 2021
Shevchenko says that she plans to continue fighting for a long time and feels that the trilogy fight with Amanda will happen, but she's not going to push it because it will happen naturally when it's the only thing that makes sense and the fans demand it.— Aaron Bronsteter (@aaronbronsteter) April 25, 2021
Meanwhile, fans, fellow fighters and pundits were clamoring for the clash.
"The only fighter I see beating Valentina Shevchenko is Amanda Nunes, and the only fighter I see beating Amanda Nunes is Valentina Shevchenko," tweeted reporter Danny Segura.
"See what's happening here? They're the very best and need to fight once again."
The only fighter I see beating Valentina Shevchenko is Amanda Nunes, and the only fighter I see beating Amanda Nunes is Valentina Shevchenko. See what's happening here? They're the very best and need to fight once again. #UFC261— Danny Segura (@dannyseguratv) April 25, 2021
Shevchenko/Nunes III is the fight to make 🤷🏻♂️🤷🏻♂️— Chase Hooper (@chase_hooper) April 25, 2021
There's going to be a point we have to go to Nunes vs. Shevchenko 3, yeah?— Dave Doyle (@davedoylemma) April 25, 2021
Shevchenko vs. Nunes 3 is the fight to make.— Guilherme Cruz (@guicruzzz) April 25, 2021
However, one person pumping the brakes on that speculation was UFC boss Dana White, who poured praise on Shevchenko but suggested her legacy lay at flyweight rather than attempting another crack at Nunes higher up the divisions.
"It's almost like she was p*ssed, she was mad," White said of Shevchenko's performance against Andrade.
"She was like a f*cking demon tonight, p*ssed off that anyone could imagine that was possible [that Andrade could beat her]. She looked incredible, one of the best performances of her career."
"[Nunes and Shevchenko] have their own legacies. They fought a couple of times. People can think whatever they want, there's always someone else coming up, a new contender.
"It's not Valentina's fault that she's one of the all-time baddest women on this planet.
"Making her move up to 135lbs just doesn't make sense, they did it twice.
"If they both come to me and they both want to do it then I'll make it happen, but it's not something I'm thinking about."
Fans, meanwhile, will continue their campaign to change White's mind – even more so after another night of total domination for Shevchenko.