Jedrzejczyk: Stripping Montano Was Right
At UFC 228, Nicco Montano would never make it to the scale for her first defense of the UFC strawweight title, as she would be hospitalized with kidney issues due to her weight cut to face Valentina Shevchenko.
Following the cancellation of the fight, UFC President Dana White would strip Montano of the title before it could ever be defended inside the Octagon. The move upset Montano, who claims the UFC strong-armed the now former champion into defending her title before she was ready.
Former UFC strawweight champion Joanna Jedrzejczyk while speaking with the press heading into UFC Moscow, agreed with the decision to strip Montano of the title, and would blast the former champion for her lack of professionalism.
“I think it was fair,” Jedrzejczyk told reporters (video by MMANytt). “I paid the ultimate price, but I was on weight November 2017 and I would do this the same because for me it’s a shame for us as fighters and champions to not be on weight. We need real and dedicated fighters and champions in the UFC. It’s simply the best organization in the world. Here is not a space and time for bulls**t like this.
“It was very hard decision, very tough decision, and I believe that she’s not happy but you must take this job very serious and you must be 100 percent in. Weight cuts are not easy, are not nice, but it’s part of our job so we shouldn’t complain and just be on weight when you have to be.”
Montano’s loss could be Jedrzejczyk’s gain, as she may be next in-line to face Shevchenko for the recently vacated championship. Jedrzejczyk would tell reporters that an offer is on the table and she is “very open” to the possibility of it.
“This fight is not on. Of course, I’ve gotten offer, but we’ll see,” Jedrzejczyk said. “I’m very open to fight Valentina Shevchenko. I always want to fight the best fighters and I think that she is one of the top female fighters in the world. [She is a] multiple world Muay Thai champion, very successful in MMA, so we’ll see what’s going to happen.”
Prior to both making the jump to MMA, Shevchenko beat Jedrzejczyk three separate times during their Muay Thai careers. Jedrzejczyk doesn’t concern herself with their past encounters and is more focused on a future showdown inside the Octagon.
“It was like 10 years ago!” Jedrzejczyk concluded. “We are different fighters. We’re not gonna meet in the ring, we’re gonna meet in the Octagon so that’s the point. It’s a different game. We’re different people now, we’re different athletes right now, we are different fighters. So, there is nothing I should be concerned about.”
Initial Report: MMA Fighting