Top ranked women’s bantamweight contender Valentina Shevchenko recently picked up a dominant 2nd round submission win over Julianna Pena at ‘UFC Fight Night: Denver’ earlier this year to cement her place as the women’s bantamweight #1 contender. The win made it 2-straight for Shevchenko, and secured her a rematch with Amanda Nunes, this time for the women’s bantamweight championship.
With that being said, there had been no official date set for a potential Nunes vs. Shevchenko II showdown, leading many fight fans to wonder when the fight will take place.
In a new interview with MMAJunkie, Shevchenko revealed that her team and Nunes’ team are close to reaching a deal:
“I think soon we’ll have something, but my manager and their managers are speaking to the UFC. Soon we’ll have a date.”
“When she declined the fight in April, she was (telling) the UFC she’d be out for some time, and she won’t be back until July,” Shevchenko said. “Of course, I was planning my schedule to be busy before July.
“But then she changed her mind, and now we are speaking about the date.”
Nunes of course is coming off a massive 2016, that saw her kick off the year by picking up a unanimous decision win over Valentina Shevchenko at UFC 196 before then winning the UFC women’s bantamweight championship by submitting Miesha Tate at UFC 200 in July. Nunes then successfully defended her title for the first time on the UFC’s New Year’s Eve card in December where she picked up a 48 second KO win over Ronda Rousey.
In regards to how Shevchenko plans to stop the momentum Nunes brings to the fight, she stated:
“I think for every person, each experience brings changes,” she said. “It’s difficult to say, because all her fights end very fast. We couldn’t see a lot.
“But she is a very dangerous opponent. That’s why I have to train three times more, and I’ll do it. But it doesn’t matter. This is what I want. I want this title, and I’ll do everything to win it.”
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 3/23/2017.