Valentina Shevchenko Doesn’t ‘100 Percent Believe’ Amanda Nunes
UFC bantamweight champion Amanda Nunes pulled out of the event just hours before her rematch against Shevchenko that was to headline UFC 213. Nunes cited problems with sinusitis as the culprit for her decision, but after hearing her her explanation, Shevchenko 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.”
“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.”
“Usually after the fight, when the fight is over, you feel free,” Shevchenko said. “But this time, I did not feel free, and still, my goal and my mission is not complete. That’s why, for now, my mental situation, my mental condition, I am still in the same fight mode. And okay, it will be a little bit longer than I expected, but I am professional and I take it right now very cold, and I know exactly if I will put too much emotions in my mind, in my head, it will not work.
“For me, that’s why I am just waiting for my time. I will do the same, prepare the same with the same desire to put on my best performance for this fight, and I will do my work, I will do everything to win the fight for the next time.
“I hope that she will complete her part, too, and she will not turn down next time too.”