“They kind of scare me” - Danielle Kelly shares why she is terrified of clowns

BJJ star Danielle Kelly admits she
BJJ star Danielle Kelly admits she's terrified of clowns [Credit: ONE Championship]

Everyone’s got their phobias. For some, it’s spiders, germs, or even heights; but for jiu-jitsu star Danielle Kelly, they come in the shape of round pasty faces with sinister red smiles.

The Philadelphia native recently opened up about her deepest fears in an interview with ONE Championship. When asked what scared her most about being near clowns, she candidly said:

“They just look weird, and they’re mostly weirdos.”

Being scared of clowns is not an irrationational fear--speaking to those traumatized millennials who were dared to watch Stephen King’s movie “IT” on Halloween by their friends.

But what’s fascinating about the subject at hand is that who knew Danielle Kelly could be so terrified of clowns? So much so that she would rather use her jiu-jitsu skills on an intimidating opponent on the mat than come face-to-face with a laughing bozo.

As a follow-up question, Kelly was asked what was scarier, an MMA fight against a ranked opponent in front of thousands of people watching or a clown?

Without hesitation, she replied:

“Probably a clown. I would say a clown. They kind of scare me. When you watch pranks on YouTube and you see those clown videos, I feel like I'd be the person that gets a heart attack and not run. I'll just freeze because they just scare me.”

Danielle Kelly hopes to fight for the first women’s inaugural atomweight world title

Danielle Kelly remains hopeful that ONE Championship will have enough female grapplers in her division to introduce the first women’s submission grappling world title in the near future.

With jiu-jitsu prodigy Mikey Musumeci and Cleber Sousa kicking off the men’s first ONE inaugural flyweight world title in submission grappling on September 30, Danielle Kelly hopes she’ll get the chance to fight for a belt as well.

She told The South China Morning Post (SCMP) MMA :

“It would mean a lot. I think it would probably put a stamp on how serious I am as a competitor. I think it would just make people take me seriously, and a belt under ONE will be the biggest accomplishment for jiu-jitsu for my division.”

ONE Championship’s dynamic and ever-expanding roster means Kelly could soon face some tough competition in her quest for ONE gold in her natural sport. Perhaps even MMA atomweights with a strong jiu-jitsu background can cross over to make the field interesting. But until that moment comes, “hope” would be the right word to use in this particular scenario.

Check out Kelly's interview with The SCMP MMA below:


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Edited by David Andrew
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