Valentina Shevchenko has claimed that Taila Santos might have gained a significant amount of weight for the fight.
UFC women’s flyweight queen Shevchenko last took on Santos in a close-fought battle at UFC 275 in Singapore. It was the first time the dominant champion looked in real danger as Santos appeared to be close to getting a submission.
Valentina Shevchenko believes Taila Santos gained more weight for UFC 275 fight
In an appearance on The MMA Hour with Ariel Helwani, Valentina Shevchenko pointed out the two-day gap between weigh-ins and fight day as a possible reason for why the bout was so competitive.
“I wasn’t expecting an easy fight at all. I knew it was going to be hard but definitely, yes. Maybe it’s the factor that in Singapore, we had almost two days between weigh-ins and fight. This kind of gives an opportunity to fighters to gain extra weight, double weight.
“Maybe that was the factor because all my throws, when I threw her down, I initiated the throws, and at the moment, it’s the weight factor when she can use this extra weight and get on top or something like that.
“So maybe this factor, the two extra days are not good, especially for me because I’m not gaining too much.”
When asked whether she knew how much Taila weighed on fight day, Shevchenko answered to the negative.
“I never asked (how much Taila weighed on fight day) but visually you could see the difference, huge. Definitely, and everyone could see.”
Shevchenko is still happy that she overcame the challenge and retained her title.
“But no, yeah, it was a good fight. Taila’s a good opponent, a strong opponent. I’m glad it was a challenge fight, I’m glad I could prove that no matter what I can outcome from any kind of situation.
“It’s not only about technique, it’s about mental game, it’s about toughness. No matter what and how, you still have to find the way to win the fight. This is my mindset, and I’m very glad that I could show that.”
Do you agree with this analysis from Valentina Shevchenko?