8. Valentina “the Bullet” Shevchenko
UFC women’s flyweight champion, Valentina Shevchenko sits in the eighth spot on the list, but if we reexamine this list in about five years, expect her to be much higher.
Shevchenko is nicknamed “the bullet” due to her fascination for firearms but also her fighting skills. The Kyrgyzstanian fighter is a decorated striker winning eight world championships in Muay Thai and another five in kickboxing. Her striking skills have transitioned well in MMA, where she uses her pinpoint accuracy and dexterity in her legs to pick apart her opponents. During her brief career, she has already outstruck decorated former UFC champions, Holly Holm and Joanna Jedrzejczyk, who are both known for their striking acumen.
Shevchenko isn’t just a one trick pony. Inside the clinch, she flashes her black belt in judo, where she easily takes down her foes with throws and inside trips. Once the fight hits the canvas, Shevchenko is very skilled at bludgeon her opponent with ground strikes as she did to Priscila Cachoeira or she can secure a submission as she did to former Ultimate Fighter winner, Julianna Pena.
The most amazing thing about Shevchenko is that she had great success in her career while competing in a division (bantamweight), where she was greatly outsized. Shevchenko once challenged Amanda Nunes for the division’s title where she was on the wrong side of a razor close split decision. A decision that many believe she should have won.
Now at flyweight, Shevchenko has captured the vacant title and looks better than she has in her career. A few title defenses and she will skyrocket up this list.