Claudia Gadelha constantly pressured the feared striker during the first and second round, and took Jedrzejczyk down several times. Although the latter took some shots from above, the champion repeatedly worked her way back to her feet. For the remaining three rounds it was all Jedrzejczyk, as she punished Gadelha with strikes and went on to receive the UD win.
Following the card, the UFC’s middleweight champ Michael Bisping had this take on the battle, during the FOX Sports post-fight broadcast (quote via FOX Sports press release):
“Claudia started strong and fast, but it’s a hard way to fight. The more she wrestled, the more tired she got and the better Joanna got. Joanna started to pepper Claudia’s body and that just got her more tired. Joanna would move around, reset after her striking, and that kept Claudia guessing all night. Joanna turned her into a human punching bag in the later rounds.”
Yes, Jedrzejczyk seems to be rather talented at turning an opponent into a “human punching bag”. Dominick Cruz, the UFC’s bantamweight champ, also had this to say about Gadelha’s approach:
“You have to be careful how much energy you use. Understand if the grappling isn’t working, then you reset, shake out the muscles and go at it again. She will learn from this. She should not explode on the wrestling so much in the early rounds.”
It will be interesting to see how Gadelha rebounds from this. Although she has lost to Jedrzejczyk twice now, the Brazilian is only 27 and is clearly one of the more talented strawweights on the roster. In other words, don’t be shocked if at some point, she faces Jedrzejczyk again.