It’s been three years since Joanna Jedrzejczyk bursted onto the UFC’s strawweight scene. At the time Jedrzejczyk was a relatively unknown well-decorated Muay Thai Kickboxer from Poland looking to make a name for herself in the sport of MMA. Ever since she first stepped foot inside the UFC Octagon back in July of 2014, she quickly barreled her way through the UFC’s strawweight division before eventually becoming world champion.
In her reign, she would dominate top contenders seemingly effortless, making her one of the best and most feared female MMA fighters on the planet. At the height of her championship run, Jedrzejczyk looked to be pretty much unbeatable, showcasing a terminator-like fighting style of forward pressure, strong takedown defense and a unlimited barrage of strikes.
After witnessing this display of dominance by Jedrzejczyk in the UFC strawweight division for so long, many experts wondered if they were any capable opponents left who were capable of taking her championship, but little did they and Joanna know on November 4, 2017, they would get a stunning answer.
As Joanna was enjoying her time, having a vice grip on her division, Rose Namajunas ( a former TUF cast member) was rising up the ranks and became the #1 contender. She challenged Jedrzejczyk for the UFC women’s strawweight championship at UFC 217. Leading up to the fight, Namajunas a was heavy underdog, with some people even sighting the bout a mismatch for Namajunas.
Once the fight started, Namajunas took control early on and surprised Joanna with a lethal left hook knocking her down in the process (this was the first time an opponent was able to take her off her feet). As the fight continued, Rose caught Jedrzejczyk again with the same left hook sending her to the canvas following up with ground and pound causing Joanna to tap out for the shocking upset victory to capture the women’s UFC strawweight title, giving her the first defeat of her MMA career.
Not long after losing her championship to Namajunas, the two had an automatic rematch at UFC 223 in April in which Joanna appeared more focused and prepared for Namajunas this time around, but ended up dropping another bout to the new champion. Now coming off back-to-back championship losses, Jedrzejczyk aims to start a new path back towards another shot at Rose and the UFC women’s strawweight belt.
That journey will begin with a must win bout against top UFC strawweight Tecia Torres at UFC Calgary on July 28. As for Rose Namajunas, she’s just training awaiting her next challenger, and if you were to ask her who she thinks that could be,she’ll tell you it definitely isn’t Joanna Jedrzejczyk, at least not at this point as she told TMZ Sports.
“Right now, that fight doesn’t really interest me at the moment,” said Namajunas. “I think I’d be interested to see how she does with somebody else before even entertaining that possibility. At the moment, there’s not much to gain from running that back again.”
“Unless she’s says I’m the best – publicly!” said Namajunas. “Publicly because I already know she knows. You gotta say it to everybody! [Laughs] She knows I’m the best but she won’t admit it to everybody.”
Will Joanna Jedrzejczyk defeat Tecia Torres and win enough fights over the next few months to earn another shot at the women’s UFC strawweight title?