Daniel Cormier believes Joanna Jędrzejczyk is the greatest strawweight champion. Jędrzejczyk is the only woman in strawweight history to defend the belt five times. Her reign as champion lasted 966 days and she is widely considered one of the best fighters in the UFC.
'DC' admitted that the sport is still very young. Fans throw around the words 'legend' and 'great' too often. The American is impressed with 'Thug Rose' and the resume of wins she is building, but believes what 'JJ' did for the division is why she should still be considered the greatest strawweight.
Speaking on the DC & RC Show, Cormier discussed the upcoming rematch between strawweight champion Rose Namajunas and the No.2-ranked Carla Esparza. Ryan Clark asked Cormier if a win for Namajunas cements her legacy in the division. Cormier responded:
"This sport is young. We tend to get excited. We have seen this time and time again... For as much of a resume as Rose is building as the champion, she's not the greatest. She's a ways off. The greatest champion in this division's history is Joanna Jędrzejczyk. It doesn't just point to the match-ups, because of all the defenses. The way that she truly put that weightclass on the map is why we view her in the way that we do."
'DC' added that a win for Namajunas, who is 1-0 down in a head-to-head with Esparza, would certainly put her in the conversation for the greatest strawweight in UFC history:
"If she wins, does Rose step closer, to being considered into the conversation as the greatest strawweight we have ever seen? Absolutely. I believe this fight does more for Rose personally than her legacy. Because you go and get that one back."
Watch the full episode here:
Joanna Jędrzejczyk vs. Zhang Weili 2
Former champion Joanna Jędrzejczyk will make her long awaited octagon return in a rematch with Zhang Weili. The two women first met in March 2020. Their fight, which won Fight of the Night, is considered by many to be the greatest women's bout in UFC history.
The two former champions went to war with 'JJ' losing a razor close split-decision. This lead to a two-year hiatus from the UFC for Jędrzejczyk. Zhang would go on to lose the belt to current champion Rose Namajunas.
The two women will meet once again at UFC 275 on June 11. Whoever walks out victorious will likely getting a trilogy fight with Namajunas provided she overcomes Carla Ezpara.