Valentina Shevchenko holding out hope that Amanda Nunes will return for UFC trilogy fight


Valentina Shevchenko believes there is still the chance that she will once again share the Octagon with recently retired two-division titleholder Amanda Nunes.

On September 16, ‘Bullet’ will return six months removed from her shocking flyweight title loss to Alexa Grasso at UFC 285. Shevchenko will attempt to reclaim the 125-pound crown as the two women collide in the Noche UFC headliner inside the familiar confines of the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.

Speaking with members of the media during Wednesday’s pre-fight press event, Shevchenko briefly spoke about the sudden retirement of her two-time opponent Amanda Nunes who walked away from the sport following a bantamweight title defense against Irene Aldana at UFC 289 in June.

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“First of all, Amanda is an amazing fighter,” Shevchenko said. “She did amazing things in this sport and I feel that many people, they’re kind of starting to judge [her] a little bit, but I want to say no one has the right to judge a fighter who did that much.”

Valentina Shevchenko Think We Could See Amanda Nunes Back in the Octagon One Day

Valentina Shevchenko and Amanda Nunes have shared the Octagon together on two separate occasions, the first coming at UFC 196 in 2016. ‘The Lioness’ secured a unanimous decision victory over ‘Bullet’, but the pair would run it back 18 months later at UFC 215. ‘Bullet’ would once again come up short, but it wouldn’t come without a bit of controversy as Nunes narrowly escaped with the win via a split decision.

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With Nunes now retired from the sport, it appeared that all hope was lost in seeing the two complete their trilogy, but Shevchenko doesn’t see it that way. In an exclusive interview with LowKick MMA, ‘Bullet’ previously suggested that Nunes’ retirement wouldn’t stick. She added to that on Wednesday, suggesting that we could see ‘The Lioness’ return after she’s had time to heal and focus on her family.

“Our second fight, I think she didn’t win,” Shevchenko added. “I think I won that fight. Many people think the same and what I can say right now, if in the future she feels like she’s rested, she’s refocused, and feels she wants to come back, I plan to be around so we will still maybe have this opportunity.”

Do you think we will ever see Amanda Nunes return to complete her trilogy with Valentina Shevchenko?

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