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Shevchenko says referee Jason Herzog may have contributed to title loss: “Hard to understand”



Valentina Shevchenko Jason Herzog 1

Valentina Shevchenko, Alexa Grasso and Jason Herzog. Photo via Instagram (@bulletvalentina) (@jasonherzogmma)

At UFC 285, former world champion Valentina Shevchenko got submitted by Alexa Grasso in the fourth round and lost her flyweight strap.

In a new interview at The MMA Hour, the former champ questions referee Jason Herzog’s decisions during the title fight. The situation where Herzog called for a standup, after she had held top position for almost two minutes, could have affected the outcome of the fight according to “Bullet”.

“I was in her guard and landing big shots over her, and he just decided to stand us up and continue the striking. It’s kind of the same situation where I say it could affect the fighter, what they do to take their opponent down,” Shevchenko said.

“They spend so much energy to [score a] takedown first, and second to hold them down, and when you [get a takedown] you definitely want to use the situation because you spend so much energy. And when it was decided, ‘Oh no, in my opinion you don’t have to be there. You have to fight in the stand-up,’ it’s kind of working against you because it affects your performance, because you have to build the situation all over again.”

Read more: Three champs but no show: Dana White still shoots down UFC Mexico in 2023

Valentina Shevchenko: “Hard to understand for me”

Valentina Shevchenko claimed that a combination small situations together could have played a role in the title bout.

“This action is hard to understand for me why it was when it was, because when I watch the fight, it’s not my fault that Alexa couldn’t go out from that position, because I was holding her very tight, and in the moment I started to land big shots, he just decided to stand us up,” she said.

The former champion might get a chance to win her belt back soon, as Grasso seems open for an immediate rematch.

Read more: MMA fan wins $470,000 betting $1 on UFC 285: “This is insane”

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