UFC 213 Embedded (Ep. 2): The Fighters Get Settled in Las Vegas

Frederick Owens
July 6, 2017

Her second takedown, in the second round, led to her earning a submission victory via armbar. She then landed many more, sending Rousey flailing across the cage and chasing her down to deliver more punishment. "I was sitting in the corner and I was like, 'what am I anymore if I'm not this?'"

Therefore my plan is to sit back and let the Shevchenko money continue rolling in, then step up to the betting window and fire on the champion, hopefully as an underdog!

Beating Rousey in 48 seconds last December should have propelled Nunes to a higher level of recognition and likely did convert some fans into followers who will purchase this weekend's pay-per-view in order to see her compete again. Heavyweight legends Fabricio Werdum and Alistair Overeem will go toe-to-toe in a legacy-defining rubber match before that, and lightweight champion Anthony Pettis makes his return to 155 pounds in the main card opener, facing off against action fighter extraordinaire Jim Miller. Not only does her inactivity mean that she rarely creates an opportunity to strike, but it also allows her opponent to dictate the range and pace of the fight.

While Nunes has made the standard media rounds and garnered accolades from the LGBTQ community, this event and the champion who will be the final athlete to enter the Octagon on Saturday evening haven't received the kind promotion needed to capitalize on her breakthrough performances from previous year and make good on White's December declaration. She doesn't hold back and puts everything behind her punches and kicks. The current champion offered so little resistance when Shevchenko surged in the third round that the addition of two championship rounds can only hurt her. The champion is big for a bantamweight and when both enter the Octagon, her size advantage will be obvious.

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Why wasn't this dominant force coming off first-round stoppage wins over two of the most iconic names in the history of women's mixed martial arts positioned as such and promoted as such long before this fight hit the horizon? THE ODDS: Shevchenko (-110), Nunes (-110) THE PICK: Unless this fight reveals a newly matured Nunes, the result of her last encounter with Shevchenko begs to be considered. She has been likened to women's strawweight champion Joanna Jedrzejczyk. Once she gets there she is a threat to score a submission victory, like she did against Pena. She passed the eye test, but once the bout started, it was clear that was the only test she would pass. Plus she is riding a five fight win streak.

"It's very sad that I could not finish that time because of time", Shevchenko said at a UFC 213 media event. "Maybe one minute more, it would be different".

Nunes via TKO in the second round.

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