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UFC on FOX 20 video recap: Shevchenko outstrikes Holm en route to decision win

In a battle between two top-notch female strikers, Valentina Shevchenko proved to be the better woman against former bantamweight champion Holly Holm.

Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports

After her painful loss to Miesha Tate at UFC 196, Holly Holm was eager to get back into title contention by taking on number-seven ranked Valentina Shevchenko. However, these plans may have been derailed after she was dominated on the feet by the multi-time world champion kickboxer.

What was the high point of the fight?

The fight was pretty even during the opening round. Holm was able to effectively utilized her slight reach advantage. But it was during the second round when the tides changed, particularly when Shevchenko began finding a home for her right hand.

Whether it was through hard jabs or her counter right hook, Shevchenko was landing these shots at will. Through the succeeding rounds, she began mixing up her strikes through leg kicks that almost rendered Holm helpless. From then on, she was no longer as effective as she was in the opening minutes.

Where do these two go from here?

With the absence of Ronda Rousey, and the emergence of the top-tier talent within the UFC’s women’s bantamweight division, the loss will be a big blow for Holm’s chances of fighting for the title again. While she still currently sits at the number two spot, it can be expected that she will drop significant notches down the rankings.

Shevchenko, meanwhile, will rightfully rise up the ladder. Given that Rousey is still seemingly the UFC’s priority for the next title shot, Shevchenko may need another fight against a top-five contender before she gets her crack at the belt. She will need to take on someone like Julianna Pena, who is also coming off an impressive performance against Cat Zingano at UFC 200.

Watch it now, later or never?

For striking purists in particular, the fight is a must-watch, as it was a great showcase of all-out stand-up fighting versatility between two of the elite female strikers in the game today.

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