This weekend’s UFC 228 was supposed to be Valentina Shevchenko‘s big chance to finally earn a UFC belt. She was going to face TUF winner and female flyweight champ Nicco Montano, she was going to murder the out-classed fighter, and then the kickboxer-turned-MMA badass was going to reign the fairly new division as queen.
Well, Montano, who has yet to defend her title after winning it eighteen years ago, didn’t even make it onto the scale earlier today for the weigh-ins. Instead, she was carted off to the hospital. And while we don’t quite know the exact reason for Montano’s misfortune, it’s safe to say the Native American fighter screwed up her weight cut, and will again go untested as champ.
It sucks for Shevchenko, who once had a match-up against bantamweight champ Amanda Nunes crap the bed in similar fashion.
It also sucks for fans, who were hoping to see a championship co-main event.
Of course, now an entire division remains in suspended animation, because its champ can’t seem to make it into the cage… but that’s another story.
Shevchenko is pretty much like, “Oh, whatever!” about the how thing. Here’s what she posted on Instagram:
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I am not surprised about this situation with Nicco. And I told it before, she can pull out from the fight at anytime. 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. She was speaking about Fighting spirit and character…. What kind of fighting spirit she is talking about? 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! First of all I am very sorry for all my fans who came to support me! I am very upset about all this happening. I was preparing for this fight hard and serious. My plan was to leave Dallas with the belt. I will keep moving forward. And will seize the next opportunity to take what is mine. Thank you everyone of my dear friends for your support!
Here’s the UFC’s official statement on the matter. The hole in the pay-per-view card will be filled by Jimmie Rivera versus John Dodson, which had originally been slated for the prelims.
As a precautionary measure, UFC flyweight Nicco Montaño was transported to a medical facility Friday morning due to health concerns.
The scheduled flyweight championship bout between Montaño and Valentina Shevchenko at UFC 228 has been cancelled.
Montano has yet to release any sort of statement. But if you had wanted to see her in action this weekend, sorry, her doing the open workouts in this Embedded vid is the closest you’re going to get.