Valentina Shevchenko blames Pat Barry and Namajunas’ corner for embarrassing performance at UFC 274

Valentina Shevchenko has been the UFC Women’s Flyweight Champion for quite some time.

She recently expressed her opinion on the infamous Rose Namajunas UFC 274 performance.

Namajunas was the favorite coming into the bout and was expected to extend her reign. But instead UFC 274 audience watched 25 minutes of basically nothing. Both Namajunas and Esparza were timid, sizing each other up and unwilling to engage. Ultimately it was a toss up in terms of results with the only certain outcome being the audience’s disappointment.

To Namajunas’ credit. She previously secured one of 2021’s most memorable championship wins with a first-round head kick knockout of Zhang Weili.

Shevchenko, who has held the flyweight belt with dominance since 2018, discussed what went wrong for namajunas in Jacksonville earlier this month on a recent edition of The MMA Hour

“It’s hard to say exactly what went wrong in that fight. I feel that Rose, she kind of has everything better compared to Carla, and she just didn’t use much,” Shevchenko remarked.

“And she could wrestle her easily… She just didn’t use her skills. I don’t know, it sometimes happens with fighters, they kind of, one day before feel so good, and the day of the fight they’re kind of like, ‘Oh my God, I don’t wanna fight.’”

Shevchenko is not wrong – previously Namajunas and her coach/fiance Pat Barry expressed superstitious concerns they had during the camp and had opted to be passive following the realization that the canvas is slippery.

Shevchenko  added “You know what can help? I think, if Carla was more aggressive and explosive, and Rose received a great punch, she would have woke up and would start to fight… Rose didn’t activate… She was not herself,” added Shevchenko.

While Pat Barry received the brunt of the criticism for Namajunas’ UFC 274 performance he still thought that the ‘game plan was perfect’ and went so far as to blame online trolls for the lackluster performance.

Shevchenko’s corner, according to her, would never have allowed her to get away with such a smug performance.

“It can happen with everyone, but every time I rely on my corner. If sometimes it happens, they would not just say, ‘Okay Valentina, okay, just do that,’ no.”

“Pavel (Fedotov), Antonina (Shevchenko), they will yell at me and say what they think about me, what I am doing. Sometimes it’s necessary,” Shevchenko said.

“I feel all these microphones corners have, they put extra pressure on them to say everything too polite. Sometimes fighters don’t need polite, they need an extra push to wake up, to have adrenaline,” Shevchenko remarked.

“You start to think, ‘If I continue to fight like that, I will lose my belt, I will lose the fight.’ Do I agree with that and continue to do nothing just to be comfortable? No, and this is what pushes me every time.”