Taila Santos came the closest anyone has ever come to taking Valentina Shevchenko’s belt in the UFC Women’s Flyweight division. The Brazilian who has a background in Muay Thai lands 51 percent of her strikes with ten of her wins coming by way of Knockout, but she has also Submissions in her arsenal of weapons with three of her wins coming by way of Submission she holds a blue belt in Jiu Jitsu but her striking is where she really shines.
Santos was born June 22, 1993 in Jaraguá do Sul, Brazil she stands at 5’6 and has fought at both Bantamweight and Flyweight in her 21 fight career. She started training in martial arts at the age of 16 when she started training Muay Thai. She would soon be entered in a championship at Chute Boxe one of the most popular gyms in the country, she win this contest. It was then that she’d start taking Jiu Jitsu and would soon take the venture into MMA with the aid of her father. She would fight one non pro fight but would lose this contest.
Santos would make her professional debut in November of 2013 when she faced off against Josiane Nunes de Lima for the Striker’s House Cup Promotion winning the fight by decision. She’d then face off against Kessiny Mara winning the fight by TKO (punches.) In Santos’ next fight she’d face off against Geisyele Nascimento she’d win the fight by KO (head kick.) She’d win her next ten fights before fighting Laisa Coimbra for the vacant Aspera FC Bantamweight Championship she’d win this fight and the title before fighting on Dana White’s Contender Series Brazil 2 winning the bout by Unanimous Decision.
Santos first trip into the UFC Octagon would be in Febuary of 2019 when she faced off against Mara Romero Borella she’d lose the fight by Split Decision. She’d then face Meatball Molly winning the bout by Unanimous Decision. She’d then face UFC submission ace Gillian Robertson winning by Unanimous Decision. MMA legend Roxanne Modafferi would be up next and Santos would again rise to this Occasion and would beat the “Happy Warrior.” She’d then face Joanne Wood where she would get her first UFC finish with a victory by Rear-Naked Choke. She’d then face Women’s Flyweight G.O.A.T. Valentina Schevchenko losing the bout by Split Decision, in the hardest contest she’s faced at 125.
Santos has a promising future in the UFC, I’d definitely love to see her run it back with Schevchenko in the future.