Joanna Jedrzejczyk has fought in the highest profiled contests that she possibly could have in her career. Now, that could be about all that’s left for her.
In March 2020, Jedrzejczyk acted as half of one of the greatest fights of all-time. It was her 10th career UFC title bout and the third she’d lost in just as many attempts. 2-4 in her last six overall, it’s left Jedrzejczyk with seemingly limited options — not only by popular belief but her own accord as well.
Knowing a thing or two about wearing gold belts is Jedrzejczyk’s coach at American Top Team, Mike Brown. The former WEC featherweight king defended his crown twice before dropping it to Jose Aldo in 2009. Eventually, Brown enjoyed a nice stint in the UFC before hanging up the gloves and beginning to sharpen the skills of some of the sport’s best athletes.
As for what’s next for his pupil in Poland’s favorite fighting daughter, Joanna Jedrzejczyk, Brown understands her current stance entirely.
“She’s been there, done that, done it all,” Brown told MMA Junkie. “She was a UFC champion for many years and is maybe tied for most title fights — she’s up there for one of the most decorated female fighters of all time, and it’s gotta be something big to draw her in. She’s not gonna fight some small rinky-dink fight that doesn’t mean anything.
“I think it’s going to take something to excite her, something significant to get her off the couch and get her into the cage. But she’s definitely willing and ready and eager and wanting that, but I don’t think at this point in her career she’s going to fight for peanuts or to prove herself. She has nothing to prove. She was a world champion for years, and it has to be something to excite her.”
When it comes to excitement, Joanna Jedrzejczyk has been a consistent example of that at 115-pounds. Her aforementioned legendary clash with Weili Zhang was immortalized on that very night. Prior, who could forget her classics in her rematches with Claudia Gadelha and Rose Namajunas.
In the ever-stacked strawweight division, there are plenty of top contenders chomping at the bit for their shot at Zhang. Yet Joanna Jedrzejczyk remains firmly ranked at No. 2 in the official UFC rankings.
All in all, Coach Brown believes the former champ can definitely get another title opportunity before her career’s end. It’s just a matter of how soon things can begin flowing at the top again.