Does the UFC need a trilogy? Shevchenko did not return the belt due to the judge’s strange decision

Does the UFC need a trilogy? Shevchenko did not return the belt due to the judge’s strange decision

Sergey Sorokin September 17, 2023, 10:10 Moscow time Audio version: Your browser does not support the audio element.

I wonder what exactly Michael Bell saw in the fifth round.

On the night of September 16-17, the UFC Fight Night 227 tournament was held in Las Vegas (USA). Alexa Grasso and Valentina Shevchenko competed in the main event of the evening. The women’s flyweight championship belt belonged to a Mexican woman. And Bullet hoped to get revenge for the recent loss and regain the title. But it turned out different. Valentina could not win, Alexa remained the champion. And now the UFC has to think about whether this matchup deserves a trilogy.

The most interesting events of the tournament:


UFC Fight Night 227: Kopylov destroyed Fremd! Shevchenko could not return the belt

It should be noted that during the fight there were several controversial moments. Midway through the fourth round, Shevchenko found herself in a difficult position. It seemed that he managed to fix three points of support on the canvas. But Grasso was quick to deliver dangerous knees to the head. And with each attack from Alexa, he felt like Bullet’s hand was still lifting off the ground. He barely talked about disqualification. But the referee could have easily reprimanded Alexa.

Title Fight Review:

I didn’t lose, but that makes me even sadder. Shevchenko failed to return the championship belt

However, the most surprising thing happened after the end of the fight. The judges deliberated for a long time and made a sensational decision. The fight for the championship belt ended in a draw. The decisive factor was the assessment of side referee Michael Bell. He was the only one to consider Grasso’s victory in the last five minutes with a clear lead of 10:8. The other two judges were also on Alexa’s side, but with a different score: 10:9.

This assessment of Bell was surprising because Shevchenko completely dominated the punches for the first half of the fifth round. He just made a mistake at the end. Furthermore, Valentina defended herself in a fairly organized manner and did not allow her rival to secure the shot. Furthermore, in the end, Bullet threw several very strong blows at him. Therefore, it is almost impossible to speak of the unconditional dominance that Bell’s evaluation suggests.

judge’s notes

Photo: UFC

Michael is still considered one of the best referees in the league. Therefore, it is difficult to understand exactly why he made that decision. Of course, we can say that Valentina hardly worked for the final victory. Grasso seemed very happy, it was not a pure Victoria Puli. But the outrage is due to a specific evaluation of a particular round, which turned out exactly like this. Shevchenko herself was outraged by the decision. She and even she tried to find an excuse for Bell’s actions.

Valentina Shevchenko

former UFC champion

“I think I won 3-2, but the judges apparently felt pressure because of Mexican Independence Day and so they gave the Mexican fighter another round. I expected a battle, and that’s exactly what I got. We started a war, I made it to the end and I think I did enough. “In a fair fight, in a fair competition, I would win.”

The fact remains a fact. Apparently, the UFC is interested in a trilogy, so the judges made a very controversial decision. They left the belt on Grasso’s shoulders so Valentina could try to get revenge again.

True, such a situation can anger other senior representatives of the division. Erin Blanchfield and Manon Fioro are already hot on Pule’s heels. Therefore, it will be very interesting to see what kind of decision the heads of the organization will make.

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