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Joanne Calderwood on the drama before Maryna Moroz loss: ‘It was kind of a breaking point for me’

Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

It was an inauspicious return to the Octagon for Joanne Calderwood when she faced Maryna Moroz, and the Scottish fighter made it known she wasn’t in the greatest frame of mind when she stepped in the cage in Poland.

Upon losing to Moroz in just 90 seconds at UFC Fight Night 64, Calderwood sent out a message to her fans via her Twitter feed. In the note she said she was still "in shock" after dealing with a personal matter just a day before the fight. She has remained cryptic as to what happened exactly, but -- in the same note -- resolved to step back and admit when she’s not okay.

On Monday, two months before she returns to the cage to fight Bec Rawlings at UFC Fight Night 72 in her native Scotland, Calderwood appeared on The MMA Hour to talk about the chain of events that went down in Krakow.

"A lot of things happened before the fight," she told Ariel Helwani. "Obviously I wasn’t at my home team [in Scotland]. I went away to Sweden [for camp], which was good and I got on with a lot of the guys over there. This training was perfect. It’s just, the night before the fight a situation happened and it just took me back, and it kind of was a breaking point for me I think.

"There were so many other things that I just put to the back of my head and I think it was just somebody in my fight camp that should have knew better kind of f---ed me over. It wasn’t a good night the night before. I didn’t get a lot of sleep."

Calderwood said that she ended up training in Sweden due to a separate issue, involving her former coach and training partner, whom she was engaged to.

"We’d been having problems for a while, and six weeks before that camp we decided that we kind of needed time away from each other," she said, saying the plan was to go to Sweden and Iceland.

When asked specifically what happened, Calderwood elaborated a little more, but ultimately didn’t want to get too specific.

"It was just a situation that I found myself in with someone that was in my fight camp at the time," she said. "It was just not a nice…you know, the night before any fight -- and this fight was a really big fight for me -- the person that knew me, they should have known first-hand that I was already worried about this fight being not right. But, something happened and I didn’t sleep the whole night and I was worried. I don’t really want to mention names because, I don’t want to be that person."

Calderwood was a cast member on The Ultimate Fighter 20, which introduced the strawweight division in the UFC and crowned its first champion. She defeated Emily Kagan in the opening round of the tournament bracket before losing to Rose Namajunas in the quarterfinals.

In her official UFC debut at the Finale last December, Calderwood scored a unanimous decision victory against Seohee Ham. She was the betting favorite heading into her fight with Moroz, which was why her listless performance stood out as something being off.

Now she is back at her normal team in Glasgow, and says she is very happy to be back in a familiar routine. Calderwood said that things are not contentious between her and her ex, and that she’s moving forward.

"It’s just hard because we never actually fell out, we just grew apart," she said. "So, it’s really hard because you get on so well. I don’t know if you’ve had ex-girlfriends or ex-boyfriends, you know where you think, she’s alright, but you don’t want to see her again. We don’t have that. We don’t fall out. We just kind of just went our separate ways. We work well together and we got on well together and we just had to put that separation in. The timing wasn’t perfect, but at the same time it never is."


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