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Joanna Jedrzejczyk on head injury at UFC 248: ‘I felt it just getting more and more swollen’

Joanna Jedrzejczyk
Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Zhang Weili walked out of UFC 248 with her strawweight title in hand, but there were no losers after Saturday’s thrilling co-main event in Las Vegas.

Zhang and former champion Joanna Jedrzejczyk put on an instant classic, battering each other for five rounds en route to a close split call that went in Zhang’s favor.

Post-fight, both fighters were gracious to one another, including Jedrzejczyk who looked the worse for wear after a massive hematoma formed on the top of her head.

Asked if she felt she’d done enough to earn the decision, Jedrzejczyk respectfully deferred to Zhang.

“You see my [swelling], I felt this, you know, she did great,” Jedrzejczk said. “There was something missing, but I felt all the punches, from the third round the [swelling] was bothering me and I felt it just getting more and more swollen, and my head was, like, going on and off.

“But all good. Congrats, champ, and I’m very happy that we gave you a good fight.”

This was the 10th UFC title fight for Jedrzejczyk, the most ever for any woman in the promotion’s history. She also holds the record for the most consecutive strawweight title defenses with five, though she has now lost four straight championship bouts.

Given that level of experience, there was nothing in particular about Zhang that surprised her.

“Not really, I was ready for everything and anything,” Jedrzejczyk said. “We both put on a hell of a performance. I’m proud of myself and my team. We’ve been working so hard. Two or three times a day, 13 times a week for the last nine weeks at American Top Team.

“Big thanks to my coaches, Mikey Brown, Katel Kubis, Mikey Rod, Phil Daru, my physiotherapist Kamil Iwanczyk.”

Jedrzejczyk also went on to thank her friends, family, and fans, not giving any indication that she is planning to slow down anytime soon. The 32-year-old has said on multiple occasions that she still feels like the champion ever since losing her title to Rose Namajunas back in November 2017 and she maintained that sentiment after her latest loss while still giving credit to Zhang.

“Thank you guys for coming and supporting me,” Jedrzejczyk said. “I will see you soon... It doesn’t matter. I carry myself as a champ, with the belt or without, I was there. Very proud of her, congrats Weili.”

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