Jedrzejczyk Defends Rousey Against Critics
Strawweight champion Joanna Jedrzejczyk, fresh off her finest title defense yet at UFC 211, is starting to be called the greatest female fighter ever by hardcore MMA fans. That title was once held firmly by Ronda Rousey, who Jedrzejczyk urges fans to remember for her accomplishments rather than her failures.
Jedrzejczyk appeared on MMA Junkie Radio on Tuesday to talk about her win over Jessica Andrade at UFC 211 in Dallas. But when the topic of Rousey came up, the strawweight champion shot down the idea that Rousey’s other media interests impacted her fighting career.
"I know that Ronda Rousey is one of the greatest athletes in this sport. And I don’t believe that she was focused more on the movies, and the commercials (and) photo shoots, than on training,” Jedrzejczyk told MMAJunkie Radio. “I don’t believe that, because she became an Olympian medalist when she was very young, and I know that she knows what hard work means.
"So, I don’t think people should blame her for that. It just happened. MMA is a beautiful sport, but anything can happen. One fight, one submission, can finish the fight. And the same thing could’ve happened in my last fight, or in the past, or it might happen in my next fight.”
Jedrzejczyk said that while she respects the choices that Rousey made when she was at the top of the game, the Polish champion is on a different path.
“It’s not easy to become a UFC champion, it’s not easy to defend the title, or become a rich person, or a popular person. But the thing is to deal with it,” Jedrzejczyk said. “I hope that I’m going to stay humble. I’m going to take this seriously, because I have a good life. I have good people around me. But still, the work in the gym is the most important. Because at the end of the day, people want to see me in good shape during the fight, not on the cover of magazines, not at the commercials.”
“I want to be remembered as one of the best and greatest fighters and athletes from Poland, not as a celebrity, or person from the covers or photo shoots,” she added. “I like to do that – I like my media and sponsorship obligations, but when it’s time for it, I do this. And I believe that Ronda did this the same way. People cannot say that, because they don’t know the truth. Only she knows.”