Valentina Shevchenko Doubts Lauren Murphy Has Her Figured Out: ‘It’s Going To Be Hard To Surprise Me’

Valentina Shevchenko and Lauren Murphy

Women’s Flyweight champion Valentina Shevchenko is adamant that her opponent Lauren Murphy will not be able to surprise her in their title fight on Saturday night. Shevchenko will look to extend her title defenses to six in a row when they step into the Octagon. Though she respects the skillset of every opponent, Shevchenko fails to see where Murphy stands out compared to her past bouts with top contenders.

“(One of the) more durable athletes that I’ve ever seen? I doubt (it),” Shevchenko said at a pre-fight news conference Wednesday. “More technical? I doubt. More well rounded? I doubt. I don’t know. For all the years that I was fighting, it’s kind of hard to surprise me with something special if you are not a superhuman. I know she is well-rounded. I know she is strong. I know she is dangerous. This is everything that I have to know about her. But something special that I could put pressure on my shoulders? No.”

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While confident, Shevchenko emphasized the preparation for a top contender like Murphy is something that is taken very seriously and has treated all of her opponents like they are the best.

“It’s every time special,” Shevchenko said. “It’s special because of the training, preparation, and everything. No matter how many times you fight, if you’re in the right mood, you’re going to feel all nervous all over again and again.”

What seems to be the most important factor for Shevchenko is her ability to remain highly disciplined. When asked about her career winding down, she doesn’t see an end in sight and believes she will be in the fight game for as long as she can be.

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“I think that if people already put a plan (or) limit to their career, they are down already because it’s kind of like they’re starting to count minutes, seconds toward their end,” Shevchenko said. “I don’t want it to happen. I want to do everything as I can, the best way that I can, the most time as I can. That’s why I don’t put nothing in front of me like, ‘Oh, this certain age, I’m done.’ I don’t want the beautiful time of my life that’s going to be ended soon. I just want to extend it as much as I can.”

How far will Shevchenko take her title defense streak?