Rose Namajunas Defeats Joanna Jedrzejczyk By Unanimous Decision To Retain Title At UFC 223

Rose Namajunas Shaved head

Their first fight was over quickly, but this time fans were treated to five rounds of Rose Namajunas and Joanna Jedrzejczyk engaged in a very competitive, technical striking battle, and when it was all said and done it was ‘Thug’ Rose who emerged victorious for the second time by way of a unanimous decision verdict.

Round One:

Both women feeling out with their jabs to start. Jedrzejczyk with a leg kick. Namajunas searching for a left hook in close.

Short flurry from JJ as Namajunas moved into range. Namajunas with a front kick that doesn’t connect upstairs. Both exchange at the same time and Namajunas’ punch seemed to connect a little cleaner.

Leg kick for Jedrzejczyk. Jab for JJ and another glancing once behind it. The former champion lands another jab. Now a leg kick. Straight punches from Namajunas. A couple of front kick attempts from Namajunas that don’t quite connect. Both fighters already looking a little reddened around the face from early punches that have landed.

left hand gets through for Namajunas. Exchange of punches and Namajunas lands a couple of hard punches cleanly.

Round Two:

Powerful one-two for Namajunas to start the second. leg kick for JJ. Jedrzejczyk moves just out of range as a couple more punches come here way.

Jedrzejczyk a little hesitant now as she tries to figure out how to hit Namajunas without getting hit herself. She lands a leg kick. Exchange of punches and Namajunas is landing better once again.

Leg kick for Jedrzejczyk. left hands are exchanged. Right hand partially gets through for Jedrzejczyk. They clinch up and Jedrzejczyk lands a knee to the body. Namajunas presses her to the cage, but not for long with Namajunas peeling away and landing a punch on the way.

Nice jab for Jedrzejczyk and Namajunas misses a front kick. Now it’s Jedrzejczyk who tries for a front kick and gets caught with punches instead.

Namajunas initiates a clinch and presses Jedrzejczyk against the cage. Knee to the body from JJ. A couple more knees from Jedrzejczyk as the round comes to an end at close range.

Round Three:

Leg kick for Jedrzejczyk. Glancing blow from Namajunas knocks JJ off-balance for a moment. Jedrzejczyk tries for a head kick, but it’s blocked.

Back to the leg kicks for JJ. Namajunas with a punch. Right hand for the champion. Straight punches for Namajunas. Flurry of punches from Jedrzejczyk.

Jedrzejczyk counters a front kick with a punch. Head kick attempt from Jedrzejczyk is blocked. left hand gets through for JJ. Now back to the leg kick. She’s staying busy this round and Namajunas hasn’t been offering the same level of output.

Overhand and a backfist from the champion miss. Front kick to the body lands for Namajunas. Jedrzejczyk lands a leg kick in return.

Body punch for Namajunas. She tries to unload with a few punches, but does get clipped by a blow in return. Namajunas tries for a trip, but JJ stays upright and goes back to striking range.

Nice one-two for JJ. Leg kick for Namajunas. Front kick to the body for Namajunas. Nice little series of punches for Joanna. Back to the leg kick for Jedrzejczyk and then she uses head movement to avoid a late flurry from Namajunas as the round ends. Definitely a much better round for the former champion.

Round Four:

Into the championship rounds then with everything to fight for. Leg kick for JJ. A couple of punches from Namajunas, but just glancing off the gloves of her rival. Leg kick for Jedrzejczyk. One-two down the pipe by JJ. She has her range dialled in a little more than the champion at this stage of the fight.

leg kick for Namajunas. Now a good right hand lands for ‘Thug’ Rose. Body punches from Jedrzejczyk. Namajunas steps in with punches that miss and Jedrzejczyk lands a few in return.

Back to the leg kicks for Jedrzejczyk. Glancing left hook lands for JJ in close. Leg kick to the inside, then one ot the outside.

Namajunas punches still often coming up a bit short. Exchange in close and this time a left hand does connect for Namajunas.

JJ with a smile on her face and shakes her head at Namajunas. Snapping left jab for Namajunas. left hand to the body for JJ and a counter punch lands solidly for Namajunas.

Close round and the two rivals touch gloves after it in a show of respect.

Round Five:

Again the two fighters touch gloves to start the round, initiated by Jedrzejczyk. Leg kick for JJ. Nice straight punches from Namajunas lands clean.

leg kick for Namajunas. Right hand for the champion. Another one-two connects. She’s found her range again. Where was this in the 3rd and 4th?

Jedrzejczyk landing back now. Namajunas throwing hard and connecting. JJ’s face getting a bit busted up here. Another hard punch connects.

Right hand for JJ but the left behind it misses. leg kick for JJ. another lands as Namajunas comes into range. Another kick and a punch, but then Namajunas lands a better blow.

jab for Jedrzejczyk. Right hand for her too. Good right for Jedrzejczyk and a glancing left. Exchange in close and a right hook from JJ gets through. Kick from Namajunas. She lands a punch too now.

Final minute of the round and they both exchange. Very close action here. leg kick for JJ. Missed head kick from JJ. She lands a knee in close.

Final 30 seconds and Namajunas lands a trip takedown. Big moment for her and Jedrzejczyk works her way quickly over to the cage and then tries to make up for this by landing a series of hammerfists to Namajunas head as the round ends.

Decision:

This was a very good, competitive fight with both fighters having their moments at different times as the action ebbed and flowed. Namajunas started the stronger in the opening rounds, but Jedrzejczyk came back into it in the third and fourth, before the champion again seemed to step up a gear in the final five minutes.

The judges have made their decision and they are unanimous in their verdict, declaring Namajunas to be the winner (49-46 x3).

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