Valentina Shevchenko defended her flyweight title for the third time by absolutely shredding Katlyn Chookagian in a lopsided performance in the UFC 247 co-main event.
The reigning queen at 125 pounds battered Chookagian on the feet and then bludgeoned her with punches on the ground until the referee mercifully stopped the fight at 1:03 in the third round. Shevchenko is now 5-0 in the division while only losing one round during any of those fights as she continues to terrorize the best flyweight fighters in the world.
“Every time I prepare to get some more. Of course, if I train hard, it’s every time easy in the fight,” Shevchenko said with the title on her shoulder after the win.
Like a surgeon, Shevchenko was dissecting Chookagian’s defense from the first exchange in the fight. The reigning flyweight champion was tactical with her combinations, firing two and three punches in a row and then finishing with a nasty kick to Chookagian’s lead leg.
While the top ranked contender was trying to keep the fight at a distance by using her long reach, Shevchenko showed no fear of reprisal when diving inside with her strikes.
Late in the opening round, Shevchenko secured a takedown and did serious damage to Chookagian when she launched a slicing elbow that opened a nasty cut over the eyebrow.
The punishment continued into the second round with Shevchenko connecting on a spinning wheel kick followed by an axe kick that almost certainly had Chookagian questioning what she could do to counter such a potent and creative offense.
At the start of the third round, Shevchenko secured an inside trip takedown and immediately moved into the crucifix position and that was the beginning of the end. Once Shevchenko had the arm trapped, she began raining down punches in bunches and with no sign of an escape coming from Chookagian, the referee had no choice but to stop the fight.
With the win, Shevchenko is quickly running out of competition at the top of the flyweight division but she’s ready to take on all comers who might want to take a shot at the gold.
“I feel there is a lot of very good girls in 125 division,” Shevchenko said. “I still have to fight them. I’m open to anything., I’m open to any fight in the future.”