Back in July, top ranked women’s strawweight Claudia Gadelha stepped into the Octagon in the main event of The Ultimate Fighter: Team Joanna vs. Team Claudia’ finale for a highly anticipated rematch with strawweight champion Joanna Jedrzejczyk.
Gadelha came out strong in the opening rounds, landing several big punches to Jedrzejczyk as the champ continued to counter with a significant volume of strikes. Ultimately, as the fight progressed, Jedrzejczyk’s cardio proved to be the difference maker as she continued to land an impressive volume of strikes en route to an impressive unanimous decision win.
Following the fight, it was reported that Gadelha got into an argument with Nova Uniao head coach Andre Pederneiras, and as a result left the Nova Uniao gym, and started her own gym in the United States.
Now, ahead of her fight with Cortney Casey at ‘UFC Fight Night: Sao Paulo’ on November 19th, Gadelha spoke with MMAFighting to discuss her departure from Nova Uniao, as well as her longstanding relationship with coach Jair Lourenco:
“My relationship with ‘Dede’ was always very professional,” Gadelha said. “We were never big friends, big partners. And it continues the same way. If I have to deal with anything professional, I will call him or he will call me. Nothing big happened.
“I was looking for evolution, and evolution is here. Brazil is behind in some things, especially in sport. I want to get better, so I had to come here. But my relationship with ‘Dede’ continues the same, 100 percent professional.”
“I think there’s still a bond with Nova Uniao because of my partnership with Jair,” she said. “He’s someone I want by my side for the rest of my life. I left Nova Uniao, but Nova Uniao won’t leave me. I continue respecting the team. I’m trying to bring him here to watch my training because, if he’s going to corner me, he has to see my training. He doesn’t have much time now, so we’re taking a look at it, but I have to have him (in my corner), yes.”
Gadelha is currently 0-2 against Jedrzejczyk, however given that she is still ranked as the #1 strawweight contender on the UFC’s official rankings, a win over Casey could very well put her on the path to earning another title shot.