International Fight Week continued on Friday with the “Ultimate Fighter” Season 23 finale. The night saw the culmination of the season long feud between coaches Claudia Gadelha and current strawweight champion Joanna Jedrzejczyk. The night also saw the crowning of two new “Ultimate Fighters”.
The highly anticipated rematch between Poland’s Joanna Jedrzejczyk and Brazil’s Glaudia Gadelha served as the night’s main event and it was a bout that did not disappoint. Both fighters have carried a disdain for one another dating back to their first bout in 2014. Jedrzejczyk would win the bout via a split decision and went on to claim the strawweight title. Gadelha battled injuries after her fight with Jedrzejczyk but came back to defeat top ranked Jessica Aguilar in April of last year. The war of words plus the close decision loss in their first bout put Gadelha right back into title contention and earned her a spot coaching opposite Jedrzejczyk for this season of “TUF”.
Jedrzejczyk withstood an early onslaught from the challenger to earn a decision victory. The first two rounds looked like Gahelha hand Jedrzejczyk’s number but as the third round began the Brazilian began to fade and Jedrzejczyk seemed to become fresher as the fight went on. By the time the fourth and fifth rounds came Jedrzejczyk was showcasing her superior stand-up skills and was landing strikes at will. The win pushed Jedrzejczyk’s career record to a perfect 12-0 and it looks like she may hold the strawweight title for the foreseeable future.
The night also saw Andrew Sanchez and Tatiana Suarez crowned the new “TUF” winners. Sanchez earned a decision victory over Khalil Rountree utilizing his grappling and takedowns to earn a rather one-sided affair. Suarez’ victory was one-sided but ended in a more dramatic fashion as she won via a D’Arce choke in the first round. Both Sanchez and Suarez were awarded contracts with the UFC.
Below are the full results from Friday’s “Ultimate Fighter” Season 23 Finale.
Main Card Results:
- Strawweight Championship: Joanna Jedrzejczyk def. Claudia Gadelha via unanimous decision
- Andrew Sanchez def. Khalil Rountree via unanimous decision
- Tatiana Suarez def. Amanda Cooper via submission in Round 1 at 3:23
- Will Brooks def. Ross Pearson via unanimous decision
- Doo Ho Choi def. Thiago Tavares via TKO in Round 1 at 2:42
- Joaquim Silva def. Andrew Holbrook via TKO in Round 1 at 0:34
Preliminary Card Results:
- Gray Maynard def. Fernando Bruno via unanimous decision
- Matheus Nicolau def. John Moraga via split decision
- Josh Stansbury def. Cory Hendricks via majority decision
- Cezar Ferreira def. Anthony Smith via unanimous decision
- Kevin Lee def. Jake Matthews via TKO in Round 1 at 4:06
- Li Jingliang def. Anton Zafir via knockout in Round 1 at 2:46