Joanna Jedrzejczyk picks apart Jessica Andrade to earn fifth straight title defense
DALLAS — Joanna Jedrzejczyk undoubtedly heard how Jessica Andrade was supposed to be the toughest test of her championship reign.
Five rounds and 25 minutes later, Jedrzejczyk celebrated yet another victory in one of her most masterful performances to date.
Jedrzejczyk showcased speed, movement and arguably the most impressive striking arsenal of any fighter currently competing in the UFC.
It appeared Andrade's best opportunity came in the opening round where she's been a remarkably fast starter and the title fight on Saturday night was no different.
Andrade was quick firing out of the gate, tagging Jedrzejczyk with a big hook that whipped her head around for a moment. The shot landed flush but Jedrzejczyk was quick to recover before re-establishing her base with a series of thudding leg kicks and straight punches.
Jedrzejczyk fired back with a quick head kick that slapped Andrade in the face, but the Brazilian smiled back at her as they continued to exchange strikes throughout the opening round.
As the second round started, Jedrzejczyk's confidence began to grow as she started to find a home for her straight jab that began snapping Andrade's head back at will. The Brazilian tried to come back with big lefts and rights to return fire, but she came up short almost every time as the reach from the champion started to become a big problem.
As Jedrzejczyk started settling into a rhythm, she was firing off leg kicks at will and then firing off another head kick that stung Andrade as well.
Jedrzejczyk is known for her volume striking and she certainly started pouring on the offense with each passing minute while walking Andrade across the cage.
As the fight wore on, Jedrzejczyk looked like she was in a sparring session with the amount of damage she was inflicting on Andrade while the challenger could offer up little in the way of resistance outside of a random flurry with most of her punches finding no home.
In addition to her jabs and leg kicks landing at will, Jedrzejczyk continued to launch head kicks that kept catching Andrade over and over again throughout the fight. It was an amazing feat that Andrade's chin held up from the shots she was taking, but Jedrzejczyk never wavered in her patience to keep pouring on the punishment.
It was a remarkable dismantling of a very tough strawweight contender as Jedrzejczyk was like a surgeon with her precision as she picked her shots in virtually every round.
Andrade showed incredible toughness, but she just couldn't catch up to Jedrzejczyk's speed, reach or volume over five rounds.
Throughout her UFC career, Jedrzejczyk has always been regarded as one of the best strikers in the world, but the way she was able to pick apart a notable power puncher like Andrade was one of her most impressive outings to date.
When the fight was over, Jedrzejczyk retained her championship for the fifth consecutive time, pitching a shutout with 50-45, 50-44, 50-45 scorecards from the judges. In total, Jedrzejczyk out landed Andrade by 225 to 83 in significant strikes over five rounds.
"No one is taking this belt from me," Jedrzejczyk said after her hand was raised yet again. "Nobody."
It's tough to argue with Jedrzejcyk considering the way she seems to get better and better while clearing out every contender that's been thrown in her path. With the win, Jedrzejczyk is expected to face Rose Namajunas in her next fight when she's ready to go again later this year.