Another fighter from the Sik-Jitsu Fighting Systems in Spokane, WA has come out with a statement on what exactly happened to UFC women's bantamweight Julianna Pena, who suffered a torn ACL, MCL, LCL, and meniscus on her right knee. Dana White was told by Pena that the horrific incident occurred after she was attacked by another member of the gym. This was a claim denied by her coach Rick Little, UFC lightweight Sam Sicilia, and now fellow lightweight Michael Chiesa, who released a full statement to MMA Fighting earlier today:
Pena was never "attacked" by some guy. She was training with a 135er that she trains with on a regular basis. He wasn't talking shit to her for wearing a TUF shirt, and if he was, it was light-hearted gym humor. They were rolling and he went for a move that he's hit on her a thousand times before and it just happened. Nobody is to blame, it was a training accident. Just like Dominick Cruz. Everyone knows how hard she is to train with cause she's so damn tough. She only has one female partner that can somewhat challenge her. Even on the show, she was training with guys on her team and, correct me if I'm wrong, they made a point to say how tough she is. She's Cyborg-esque, I guess you could say, minus the PEDs.
Were a very close knit team here in Spokane, she was training with someone that she's gone all the way to Canada to corner. She's held this guy's child, they are very close. This guy wasn't some attacker or whatever the hell she said. This whole thing is tearing our team apart.
Once again that is a wildly different story than the one White was told and relayed to the media yesterday. Sicilia's account of what happened is evidently based on hearsay, as he admitted he was not there at the time the injury happened.
We know that Pena has suffered a devastating and long-term knee injury, but we've yet to reach actual clarity on what exactly caused it. The stories have varied from it being simply an accident to the equivalent of assault. Chiesa's latest comments just adds another name in what is a very unfortunate situation.
Here's what Ariel Helwani, Luke Thomas, Chuck Mindenhall of MMA Fighting and Jeff Wagenheim of Sports Illustrated had to say about this situation on the MMA Beat:
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- Sam Sicilia says Julianna Pena was not 'assaulted' as claimed by Dana White
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