Dana White Announces Valentina Shevchenko vs Jessica Andrade for UFC 261

Published 02/24/2021, 1:26 PM EST
CHICAGO, IL – JUNE 08: Valentina Shevchenko of Kyrgyzstan celebrates her KO victory over Jessica Eye in their women’s flyweight championship bout during the UFC 238 event at the United Center on June 8, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)


UFC President Dana White has confirmed to ESPN’s Brett Okamoto that UFC women’s flyweight champion Valentina Shevchenko will defend her title against Brazilian contender Jessica Andrade at UFC 261. However, the April 24th pay-per-view hasn’t been assigned a venue just yet.

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Andrade moved up to the 125 lbs division in October 2020. She scored a knockout win over Katlyn Chookagian in her divisional debut.

The former strawweight champion laid claim to the 115 lbs belt at UFC 237 when she recorded a slam knockout against Rose Namajunas. However, she subsequently surrendered the belt to current champion Zhang Weili.

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As for the flyweight champion, she is one of the most decorated female athletes to ever grace the octagon. Since dropping down from the 135lbs division, she has looked absolutely indomitable.

‘Bullet’ won the belt against Joanna Jedrzejczyk at UFC 231. She has since made 4 successful defenses besting the likes of Jessica Eye, Liz Carmouche, Katlyn Chookagian, and Jennifer Maia.

The fight against Andrade will be Shevchenko’s 5th defense of her title. Andrade is widely regarded as the toughest test for Shevchenko in the flyweight division. But if the champion’s previous performances are anything to go by, she should establish her dominance yet again.

ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – OCTOBER 18: (R-L) Jessica Andrade of Brazil takes down Katlyn Chookagian in their women’s flyweight bout during the UFC Fight Night event inside Flash Forum on UFC Fight Island on October 18, 2020 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

Valentina Shevchenko vs Jessica Andrade: Early Prediction

Both fighters are pretty well versed in all aspects of mixed martial arts. Out of Shevchenko’s 20 wins as a professional, 15 has come by finishes. She has 8 KO/TKO and 7 submission wins in her resume.

Andrade has identical finishes under her belt out of her 21 finishes. So, they are pretty evenly matched, one might say.

LAS VEGAS, NV – NOVEMBER 21: (R-L) Valentina Shevchenko of Kyrgyzstan takes down Jennifer Maia of Brazil in their women’s flyweight championship bout during the UFC 255 event at UFC APEX on November 21, 2020 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

However, Shevchenko has displayed unprecedented dominance over the course of her MMA career, especially in her stint in the flyweight division.

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But Andrade is no pushover. Her spectacular win over Namajunas at UFC 237 and her UFC run in general is a testament to the same.

However, she would still have to put up an extraordinary display to dethrone the champ. Otherwise one can expect ‘Bullet‘ to retain the throne.

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Who gets it done in April? Andrade or Shevchenko? Who are you rooting for?

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Apratim Banerjee

686 articles

Apratim Banerjee is an MMA author for EssentiallySports and has been writing professionally for almost a year. Before his current gig, Apratim worked as a UFC writer for Sportskeeda. A long-time MMA fan, Apratim has developed a critical eye for the sport that has helped him transfer his vast knowledge to his copies and give hardcore and casual readers a detailed insight into the fights and fighters.

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