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Valentina Shevchenko says injured Nicco Montano wanted to ‘escape’ UFC 228 title fight

UFC Fight Night: Shevchenko v Pena Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

Valentina Shevchenko will have to wait to get her hands on her second UFC title shot.

“Bullet” was expected to take on current UFC women’s flyweight champion Nicco Montano tomorrow night (Sat., Sept. 8, 2018) at UFC 228 live on pay-per-view (PPV) from inside American Airlines Center in Dallas, Texas, but a bad weight cut left the champ hospitalized and forced UFC to cancel the co-main event all together.

Luckily for Montano, her team says she will make a full recovery after initially battling kidney issues. That’s all well and good, but it doesn’t do much to lessen the blow to Shevchenko’s own title aspirations.

The flyweight challenger put Montano on full blast earlier today with the following Instagram post:

“I am not surprised about the situation with Nicco,” wrote Shevchenko. “And I told it before, she can pull out from the fight at any time. She was trying to avoid this fight several times already. It is my 3rd preparation for this fight. Looks like it was her plan from the beginning, to show up for the fight week, to build up her name, speak confident and secure, and then escape from the fight in the last minutes.

“I don’t believe in a version about health issues, she was looking totally fine in open work out and media day. Her actions are totally unprofessional!”

While it’s highly unlikely that Montano did anything to purposely miss her first UFC title defense, she was entering the fight as a massive +800 underdog. She would have been facing incredible odds to defeat Shevchenko and hand “Bullet” her first loss at 125 pounds.

For now, the two flyweights will have to wait to officially cross paths inside of the Octagon. Montano was expecting to make her return to action after missing the last nine months due to a broken foot so this has to sting.

What say you, Maniacs? Do you think Montano purposely avoided Shevchenko? will deliver LIVE round-by-round, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC 228 fight card, starting with the Fight Pass “Prelims” matches online, which are scheduled to begin at 6:15 p.m. ET, then the remaining undercard balance on FX at 8 p.m. ET, before the PPV main card start time at 10 p.m. ET.