Rose vs. Joanna 2 Confirmed for UFC 223

We discussed the rumor this week on the podcast, and today the speculation turned to reality as Rose Namajunas will officially defend her Women’s Strawweight Championship for the first time against the fighter she took the belt from: Joanna Jedrzejczyk!

Namajunas (7-3) upset Jedrzejczyk in stunning fashion in November at UFC 217, knocking out the record-breaking Polish champion via first-round stoppage. Altogether, the 25-year-old “Thug Rose” has won five of her past six Octagon appearances, defeating the likes of Tecia Torres, Michelle Waterson, Angela Hill, and Paige VanZant on her road to the title.

Jedrzejczyk (14-1), meanwhile, suffered the first defeat of her decorated career in her loss to Namajunas. The 30-year-old ex-champion was one win away from tying Ronda Rousey’s all-time women’s record for consecutive UFC title defenses heading into UFC 217. Her title run started with a vicious knockout of Carla Esparza then stretched across five dominant victories over Jessica Penne, Valerie Letourneau, Claudia Gadelha, Karolina Kowalkiewicz, and Jessica Andrade.

UFC 223 takes place at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. The event is headlined by a lightweight showdown between interim champion Tony Ferguson and undefeated challenger Khabib Nurmagomedov.