The Ultimate Fighting Championship returned to us tonight, September 16, 2023, for Noche UFC, going down live from the T-Mobile Arena in Paradise, Nevada.
Headlining the event was a women’s flyweight championship rematch between Alexa Grasso (16-3-1) and no. 1 ranked former champion Valentina Shevchenko (23-4-1). Grasso shocked the world in their first encounter earlier this year in March, taking the title from Shevchenko in devastating fashion.
Shevchenko was attempting to make the eighth-straight defense of her title in that bout, falling short via rear naked choke in round four. Tonight she attempted to regain the championship she was so dominant in holding onto for over four years.
Grasso on the other hand attempted to make the first defense of her newly claimed title tonight at UFC Fight Night 227.
Continue reading to see how this flyweight championship rematch went down:
Official Result: Alexa Grasso vs Valentina Shevchenko II results in split draw (48-47, 47-48, 47-47)
Shevchenko lands her round kick to the body to begin the bout, and starts to tag Grasso with both her right and left hands shortly thereafter. She body lock trips Grasso down to the mat in the final minute of the opening round, though Grasso gets back to her feet soon after.
Grasso lands a heavy right hand that floors Shevchenko in the second, following it up with a series of punches and nasty knees to the body along the fence. Shevchenko then perfectly times a double leg takedown and controls the latter half of the second.
Shevchenko secures another beautiful takedown in round three and jumps for a guillotine choke when Grasso attempts to get up, mounting her whilst locking in the choke. Grasso works her way out of the choke, but gets her back taken where much of the round is spent with her being controlled.
After a close fourth round Grasso takes Shevchenko’s back in an exchange toward the end of the fifth and final round, holding the body triangle once the final bell sounded.
This was a close one. Though a draw in anti-climactic, it isn’t that awfully surprising.
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I became a fan of combat sports when I was 12 years old. I was scrolling through the channels and landed upon Versus, where WEC was televised. Urijah Faber fought Jens Pulver for the second time that night. That’s the first fight I ever saw, and I was immediately hooked. So eventually, I began covering the sport in the fourth quarter of 2018, and have since started writing about animals as well. If you’d like to see those pieces, be sure to check out learnaboutnature.com!