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Michelle Waterson rips ‘dirty fighter’ Germaine de Randamie’s actions vs. Holly Holm

LOS ANGELES — Michelle Waterson is not known for getting into beefs or feuds with her foes. “The Karate Hottie” will meet Rose Namajunas in the strawweight co-feature bout of Saturday’s UFC on FOX 24 in Kansas City, and the build-up has been nothing but respectful so far.

If you wrong Waterson’s teammate, though, then you’ve got trouble.

At UFC 208 in Brooklyn, Waterson’s longtime JacksonWink training partner, Holly Holm, was belted after the bell in two separate rounds by opponent Germaine de Randamie. De Randamie was not penalized for either infraction, which made a difference at the end when Holm lost a close decision and de Randamie became the first-ever UFC women’s featherweight champion.

But it isn’t even the idea de Randamie hit Holm after the bell, in and of itself, that bugs Waterson most. The way the former Invicta atomweight champion sees it, if a fighter is going to play dirty, they should own it, and not pretend to be friendly.

“If you’re going to be a dirty fighter, cool, that’s you’re style, whatever,” Waterson said Monday. “But don’t come out and try to touch gloves with me at the beginning of every round and then hit me after the bell. Pick your poison. Don’t hit me and then be ‘oh sorry, my bad, we’re friends.’ No. That’s my thing about it.”

Holm appealed the fight with the New York State Athletic Commission, only to have the appeal denied. Waterson says Holm is in good spirits and sets an example in the gym by conducting herself in a professional manner, win or lose.

“I can say nothing but great things about Holly,” Waterson. “She is someone to look up to. She, no matter what is going on in her life, if she’s passionate about something, she’s going to do it right. Whatever happened in this last fight, she came back to the gym that Monday to train. That’s just the type of champion that I like to look up to.”

And while she’s biased, Waterson believes that not only did the goings-on at UFC 208 merit a rematch, but that this time out, Holm would take home the gold.

“I think there should be a rematch,” Waterson said, “and I think Holly will win.”

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