Joanna Jedrzejczyk on Jessica Andrade and Aiming for UFC Flyweight Title

Guilherme Cruz MMA Fighting

Guilherme Cruz MMA Fighting

"I'm one of the only undefeated champions, which is awesome, because previous year was very insane for other UFC champions", she told Sporting News in the lead-up to her UFC 211 title defence this weekend.

When it comes to her potential to one day retire as the G.O.A.T., one could make the case that Jedrzejczyk has already defeated better competition than Rousey, who ran off an nearly mythical two-plus year stretch of dominant finishes before Holly Holm shockingly exposed her as one-dimensional in November 2015. It would leave her with virtually one valiant challenger left in a division chock-full of incredibly talented fighters who've no clue how to properly exploit the slight weaknesses of the champion. Pretty much everybody that fought her before, once Joanna put pressure they would walk back.

"Staredowns are very important", she recently told Fox Sports.

"We are very much aware of everything Joanna does well and we are even more aware of what I do well and how those two match. It's her weak spot". It's about using these moments.

The sport has seen many great champions step into the Octagon. She's used to people throwing one, two, three, and getting out.

"Since we got the fight, even before, I've seen the fight playing out in many ways. I think that will make a difference". If Andrade tightens up her striking and lands something clean it's going to be lights out. "That's why I must stay humble and work hard every day so they can not do that".


"What's the motivation? I want to stay the UFC champion".

Despite the fact that her fighting future remains unclear, Rousey is a role model and ground-breaker, but with the record in sight Jedrzejczyk wants to - in her own words - "become an idol for herself". What matters is I'm giving it my all. Jessica didn't face someone tough like me, so I will let her taste the power of my fists. Whatever the Octagon or place we are, I'll be well prepared. And go in hungry, and not be fazed.

As odd as it might sound, Andrade concedes that Jedrzejczyk is probably the better technical kickboxer in this fight, but that doesn't mean she won't get hurt when getting punched in the mouth with a thudding left or right hand from the Brazilian contender. "If hers was strong, mine will be even stronger". Respect must always exist.

Since coming down from bantamweight to fight at 115 pounds, Andrade has torn through every strawweight who has been put in her way. It's not dissimilar to the way Conor McGregor has hyped up his fights, but Jedrzejczyk hasn't been able to escape the notion that she sometimes takes it a little too far, especially last summer when she defended her belt against Claudia Gadelha. She'll punch and elbow me, but I'll still be in front of her. Also, Joanna being bigger and longer than me - it's going to be a lot harder for Andrade to pressure her to the fence where it's easier to score points from flurries and takedowns. When I fought at 135, we had one training session together and she said I was very strong.

"You can see that I'm kind of a amusing person and I like to be happy and smile", Jedrzejczyk said. She knows what awaits her. I think I could knock her out, I could finish her. She's focused. She's aware that it's going to be a tough fight, like I am, and she knows that I don't like trouble, I don't like taunting people.

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