16 Sep, 2019

Michelle Waterson: Joanna Jedrzejczyk doesn't have same aura, mystique she once did

Michelle Waterson isn’t intimidated heading into her fight with former strawweight champion Joanna Jedrzejczyk, nor is “The Karate Hottie” awestruck.

Waterson (17-6 MMA, 5-2 UFC) takes on Jedrzejczyk (15-3 MMA 9-3 UFC in the main event of UFC on ESPN+ 19 on Oct. 12 in Tampa, Fla., and the matchup could very well serve as a No. 1 contender fight for her.

And Waterson doesn’t believe Jedrzejczyk, who’s lost three of her last four, carries the same daunting vibe she once did while tearing through the 115-pound division.

“I don’t feel like she has the aura, the mystique behind her as much as she used to,” Waterson said in an interview with Fox 13 in Tampa. “At the end of the day, we’re all human, we all bleed the same blood, and she’s in the way of what I’m trying to accomplish, which is to be the UFC’s first mother champion.”

Being the first mom UFC champ has been a longtime goal for the “Karate Hottie,” and she’s on the cusp of achieving that. She’s enjoying the best stretch of her UFC career, with three straight wins over Cortney Casey, Felice Herrig and most recently Karolina Kowalkiewicz at UFC on ESPN 2.

Her daughter is often seen rolling on the mats with her at Jackson Wink MMA, and the support of her family has allowed the former Invicta FC atomweight champ to find success in the sport.

But she UFC title is that one final major goal.

“I think it takes a team behind you, so my husband is super supportive of my dream and so is my daughter,” Waterson said. “I mean, she’s been to every single one of my fights since she’s been born, so she knows what it’s about. She knows when mommy needs to train and that she needs to allow me to focus, and she understands when I bite her head off sometimes because I’m ‘hangry’ but it takes a whole team and it’s not just my goal, it’s our family’s goal.”

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