Former UFC women’s bantamweight title challenger Valentina Shevchenko joined the TSN MMA Show with Aaron Bronsteter and Joe Valtellini and said that she does not rule out the possibility of a Ronda Rousey return.
“We never know. We saw Georges St-Pierre come back after some years of not fighting. I think she might come back sometime,” said Shevchenko. “She will need the competition and she will decide to come back.
Rousey last fought against current champion Amanda Nunes at UFC 207 last December and was knocked out in the first round, but Shevchenko does not believe that every fighter could implement that game plan successfully.
“Things happen in every fight. Miesha Tate is not Amanda Nunes and she would not use the same tactics that Nunes did against Rousey. Even if you know how to beat someone, it doesn’t mean that you can do it,” Shevchenko said. “I don’t think Rousey is broken, she just wants to rest and enjoy her time and when she feels she is ready to come back she will come back.”
Shevchenko, whose most recent loss also came at the hands of the champion Nunes at UFC 215 in September plans on fighting in the newly formed flyweight division for her next fight.
“In the bantamweight division, I felt very comfortable to fight, but at flyweight, it’s more my own weight category and I’m sure that I’ll be able to show more techniques and skills when I fight someone that is the same size as me,” said Shevchenko about moving down a weight class.
Shevchenko recently took exception to a tweet that Paige VanZant made declaring that her next fight would be against the winner of The Ultimate Fighter 26. The winner of that season is going to be crowned the inaugural women’s flyweight champion, which would mean that VanZant would get the first title shot.
Shevchenko tweeted that VanZant would need to beat her before getting a title shot and told The TSN MMA Show that VanZant turned down the fight with her when it was offered.
“If you have the power to say I will fight for the belt next, you need to prove to the people that you deserve it,” said Shevchenko about VanZant’s tweet. “You cannot just jump in and say I want the title, you have to deserve it, you have to fight for it and when you’re close to the title fight, you’ll receive it, but not because you say it.”
Shevchenko told The TSN MMA Show that the UFC is looking for her next opponent and that she plans on making her return to the octagon at the beginning of 2018.
Ultimately, Shevchenko is hoping to become the first woman to be a two-division champion and that she has unfinished business with Nunes after she lost by the narrowest of margins at UFC 215 in Edmonton.
“I cannot leave things how they are with Nunes, I know that she didn’t win that fight,” said Shevchenko. “Now I’m planning to do good things at flyweight and of course I will be back to fight Amanda again.”
The full interview with Valentina Shevchenko can be heard on this week’s episode of The TSN MMA Show.