Valentina Shevchenko is not buying Amanda Nunes’ excuse for pulling out of the UFC 213 main event. The pair were scheduled to battle for the UFC bantamweight championship in the main event of UFC 213, this past Saturday. However, the champion, Amanda Nunes, pulled out from the fight just hours before the event was scheduled to take place. Since the fight, Nunes has cited sinusitis as the reason she dropped out. Shevchenko however does not believe it.
“I don’t 100% believe that it’s true,” Shevchenko said Monday on The MMA Hour. “She’s trying to say that this was medical something, like with medicals because of her illness or something like this — because during all this week before the fight, [even] one day before the fight at weigh-ins, or the (open) workouts, everybody saw her in very good health, very aggressive. And even at the weigh-ins, she was saying, ‘I’m ready to give this fight, very good fight and take the victory,’ saying and doing all things aggressive like she did.
“Then after weigh-ins, the day of the fight, she [pulls] out, she says, ‘okay, I was feeling bad all week.’ But at the same time she was saying, every time, that she was feeling very strong and prepared for the fight.”
Shevchenko doubts the champion was truly unfit to fight. She feels as though Nunes’ was “totally healthy” right up until the very last moments.
“I don’t know what she has in her mind, but I see what I see,” Shevchenko said. “She turned down the fight in the very, very last minute, and before the fight she was saying that, ‘I’m ready, I’m feeling good, I’m feeling strong,’ and everybody could see that she was feeling strong, she was feeling aggressive, she was acting in that way in our staredowns before the fight, at the weigh-ins, at the workouts. She was feeling totally healthy.”
“I will not be surprised if the next time the UFC gives another date for the fight, she will turn down the fight at the same moment and do this kind of stuff again,” Shevchenko said. “Because every time I [read about] history, I read about how armies use tactics for winning their battles, and sometimes they are doing the same. Like, they prepare for the fight, their opponents prepare for the fight, then in the right moment they are turning down an opponent.
“They’re expecting to relax their opponent [until] an unexpected time for them to attack and win the fight. And of course, I will not be surprised if she will do the same again the next time and try to relax me and wait until the right moment to say, ‘okay, let’s do the fight,’ feeling that I’m not prepared and try to play with this gameplan. But I want to say, it will not happen with me anytime — and she will try to do it anyway — because I’m training every day. It doesn’t matter if I have a fight or don’t have fight, I train at every time and I will be prepared for every time.”
One person who agrees with Shevchenko is UFC president Dana White. He has revealed he won’t be giving UFC bantamweight champion Amanda Nunes another main event. White also said that he believes Nunes withdrawal was more of a mental problem than a physical one. He said the UFC is working on rebooking the fight for UFC 215, which takes place Sept. 9 in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.
Fight fans, how do you feel about the whole situation? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.