Ahead of her UFC strawweight title fight against Zhang Weili at UFC 248, Joanna Jedrzejczyk has said she is even more obsessed and dedicated compared to when she was the champion of the division.
Jedrzejczyk (16-3) will hope to win back the title she once held for over two years this weekend. The 32-year-old defended her title five times against the likes of Jessica Andrade, Karolina Kowakiewicz and Claudia Gadelha before losing it to Rose Namajunas at UFC 217.
Hoping for similar result to her last fight, a unanimous decision win against Michelle Waterson last October, Jedrzejczyk spoke recently to MMA Fighting about her increased desire to get her belt back.
“Since I lost the belt, I became even more obsessed than when I was champion,” Jedrzejczyk said. “With the belt, physically having the belt or not, you can act like the champ. You can be the champ. I made it to the elite. Not once but six times. I miss it.
“I’ve been in this business 17 years. Multiple time Muay Thai and European champion, six time UFC world champion and this one victory on March 7 is going to be bigger than my whole fighting career, all the titles, everything, all the accomplishments. It’s going to be bigger.”
Jedrzejczyk continued by saying she doesn’t think Andrade was in her best fighting shape when Zhang knocked her out in just 42-seconds last August to win the strawweight belt. The decorated Polish striker feels Zhang, who is on a twenty fight winning streak has not fought anyone like her so far in her career.
“I think that Jessica Andrade was not in her best shape when she faced Weili Zhang. What I heard from her camp, that they had so many problems in China with the weight cut. She couldn’t be focused on the proper weight cut and rehydration and then fight. It was a totally different Jessica Andrade in the fight with Weili Zhang. Like I said, she’s the champ. She’s training really, really hard. But she hasn’t faced someone like cut and rehydration and then fight. It was a totally different Jessica Andrade in the fight with Weili Zhang. Like I said, she’s the champ. She’s training really, really hard. But she hasn’t faced someone like me yet.”
UFC 248 takes place this Saturday, March 7th, at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. A UFC middleweight title fight between Israel Adesanya and Yoel Romero will headline the card.