UFC flyweight champion Valentina Shevchenko was utterly dominant tonight against Jessica Andrade as she beat her at her own game with relentless takedowns and then finished her in the second round with a nasty series of elbow strikes from crucifix position.
The first of three title fights is underway at UFC 261.
Leg kick lands to the thigh for Shevchenko. Now a high kick that comes off the guard. Andrade with a body punch.
Andrade has missed with two leg kicks so far. One-two for Shevchenko. Body kick for Andrade. Leg kick for her, but Shevchenko immediately counters by getting to the body lock and landing a big takedown in the center of the Octagon.
Andrade quickly back up, but Shevchenko stays clinched and brings her straight back down. Andrade up again and trying to throw elbows back at Shevchenko.
Shevchenko lets her go and tries for a head kick. Three-piece combo for Shevchenko. They clinch up and Andrade works the body. Shevchenko tries to turn her and they move over to the cage. More body punches from Andrade, but then Shevchenko brings her down again.
Shevchenko quickly sinking in a rear-naked choke attempt, but Andrade survives that attempts. Andrade stands, but Shevchenko still clinches and lands a big knee to the leg and then head, then one more upstairs for good measure.
Andrade trying to rip some punches to the body, but Shevchenko still in an advantageous position in this clinch and then brings her back down and moves quickly to side control, where she remains to end the round.
Jab for Shevchenko. Another lands and Andrade wings a big hook at her. However, Shevchenko works for another takedown and slams her down hard.
Shevchenko in half-guard here and seemingly in complete control of the fight so far. Body punches for the champion.
Andrade drives back up to her feet and Shevchenko thinks about a guillotine choke, then opts not to. Andrade presses Shevchenko to the cage and then tries to lift her up as she’s done with other smaller fighters in the past, but Shevchenko stays on her feet. Again Andrade goes for it and again she’s denied.
Now Shevchenko slickly brings her to the mat yet again. Shevchenko is completely dominant here as she gets into the crucifix position and starts to reign down big elbows. Andrade is powerless to defend against these and gets cut open in the process.
The ref is looking at this closely and rightly decides to wave off the fight – masterclass performance from Shevchenko to win by TKO at 3.19mins of the second round.