It wasn’t the dominant title defense she was hoping for but UFC women’s flyweight champion Valentina Shevchenko still edged out game challenger Jennifer Maia last night (Sat., Nov. 21, 2020) at UFC 255 live on ESPN+ PPV from inside UFC APEX in Las Vegas, Nevada. “Bullet” would defeat Maia via unanimous decision.
It didn’t take Shevchenko long to move inside and take Maia to the ground. Maia is quite savvy off her back and was able to defend good enough to avoid serious damage. Maia was able to reverse roles in the second when she took Shevchenko down and scored some valuable top time. It was even through two.
In the third, Shevchenko was able to land a powerful punch on the feet before dragging Maia back to the ground. The challenger quickly returned to her feet to pin “Bullet” against the cage and score knees in the clinch. Shevchenko regained momentum in the fourth with crisp strikes from range. The champion eventually shot inside and secured yet another takedown. Shevchenko would maintain top control for the rest of the round.
The fifth and final frame saw an urgent Maia rush in and try to grab a hold of Shevchenko. The champion scored some good offense with elbows off the clinch and precision strikes from distance. It was much closer than what many expected, but Shevchenko still pulled it out.
Check out the highlights below courtesy of UFC/ESPN.
For complete UFC 255 result and coverage click here.