Joanna Jedrzejczyk has a simple message for rival Claudia Gadelha: Be quiet!
In just a few days the Polish champion will make her second defense of the UFC's strawweight belt against Valerie Letourneau in the co-main event of UFC 193, which will be held in Melbourne, Australia, to an expected audience of 70,000 people. But even a few days before the historical event, it's hard to ignore the interviews and posts on social media from her former foe.
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Gadelha and Jedrzejczyk fought in December 2014 with the European winning by split decision - a result questioned by the Brazilian to this day. Since then, the member of the Nova Uniao team spares no provocation to her rival and is constantly campaigning for a rematch.
In a telephone conversation with UFC.com Brazil, the always friendly “Joanna Champion” changed her tone when talking about Gadelha.
"You know what? Gadelha is talking too much! She should just be quiet and wait for her chance to fight,” said Jedrzejczyk. “It's so stupid because the champion cannot wait for the challenger but the challenger can wait for the champion. She was injured, she was not able to fight on Nov. 14. We were supposed to fight on Jan. 2 but I've got the chance to fight on this card in Melbourne, so I just said yes. It wasn't because I'm afraid of Gadelha, it's so stupid! I just took my chance to be more visible. I'm a professional athlete, I'm in shape all the time and trying to be the best. I am happy that Valerie is my opponent. She deserves to fight for this title. That's all I can say."
Among the barbs thrown by Gadelha were comments on the champion's appearance – comparing her to a character from The Lord of the Rings saga – and claims that Jedrzejczyk’s last two opponents were not up to her level. Jedrzejczyk, however, ensures that she does not mind the trash-talking and that she has done enough to prove herself as the best fighter in the weight class.
"I do not care about her! I do not care about her and other trash talkers! I proved that I am the best, I proved that I am the real champion. I defended my title in Berlin, and I'm gonna defend my title in Melbourne. I became a champion, it's a big deal! Becoming a champion means that you are good. People will say you are a paper champion, that your opponents weren't that good. It's bullshit! I did this job for 12 years. I wasn't preparing for a few weeks to be the champion, I've been preparing for this all my life! They cannot just talk and think that it's easy to become a challenger and be the champion. It's not that easy. I am the real champion."