Alexa Grasso is not someone Valentina Shevchenko will ever underestimate.
The co-main event of Saturday's UFC 285 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas will see the UFC women's flyweight champion defending her championship for the eighth time in a row against a hot Grasso (15-3 MMA, 7-3 UFC).
The Mexican fighter presents a good challenge for Shevchenko (23-3 MMA, 12-2 UFC), but nothing more difficult than the opponents she has been used to facing for so long.
“Alexa is a good fighter, a strong fighter. If she’s fighting against me for this title, it’s for a reason. But it’s all the same. All are strong fighters at this level of competition. They’re the very best at this level, so it doesn’t matter how good she is, what matters is that I’m here to defend the belt. It’s not about her, it’s about my preparation. If I’m 100 percent in form, I know I can do well in the fight,” Shevchenko noted in an interview with MMA Junkie.
Since increasing his weight to 125 pounds, Grasso is unbeaten. She has won four straight matches, taking down well-known opponents including Viviane Araujo, Joanne Wood, Maycee Barber, and Ji Yeon Kim. Although Grasso has demonstrated a strong ground game in her fights, both defensively and offensively, she has won over fans and critics with her technical boxing.
Shevchenko is aware of Grasso's strongest suit, but she believes that in order to challenge Grasso's reign as champion, she will need a far more robust arsenal of strikes.
“I’m ready to fight wherever the fight goes –striking, wrestling, ground game. I know what to do and how to dominate in each area. I will show that on Saturday,” Shevchenko added.
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