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Marina Rodriguez blasts Jedrzejczyk for her inactivity, stumps for Esparza to get subsequent title shot

With a win over Mackzenzie Dern within the UFC Vegas 39 important occasion, Marina Rodriguez can now think about herself a title contender however when she would possibly truly get a shot on the strawweight championship stays to be seen.

As spectacular as her present run has been with three consecutive victories together with dominant showcases in opposition to Dern and Michelle Waterson in headline fights, Rodriguez nonetheless has a logjam in entrance of her in terms of the UFC rankings.

First and foremost is former champion Carla Esparza, who many believed ought to have earned the subsequent shot at reigning champion Rose Namajunas after she rattled off 5 straight wins together with a cut up determination over Rodriguez. Despite that resume, she was nonetheless handed over so former champion Zhang Weili may get a direct rematch with Namajunas after she was knocked out in simply 88 seconds of their earlier assembly.

Even Rodriguez was stumping for Esparza to get the title shot with hopes {that a} win may doubtlessly arrange a rematch between them with the strawweight championship on the road.

“That’s the factor, I actually assume that Carla was the one that ought to have been getting the title struggle now and never [Zhang Weili],” Rodriguez stated on the UFC Vegas 39 post-fight press convention. “But if the UFC does supply me a title struggle forward of her, who am I to say no to it?

“But I’d a lot choose to let her go struggle for a title, possibly get that belt after which we will do the rematch for the belt. I don’t have on a regular basis on the planet so she’s obtained to get transferring.”

As she appears to be like forward at potential competitors, Rodriguez solely has a few choices that wouldn’t have her preventing an opponent with a decrease rating within the division.

One intriguing choice would appear to be former strawweight champion Joanna Jedrzejczyk, who hasn’t truly competed since she misplaced a razor-close cut up determination to Zhang again in March 2020.

“Honestly, Joanna’s already stated she doesn’t wish to struggle me,” Rodriguez stated in regards to the ex-champion. “Let’s be trustworthy, she shouldn’t even be ranked anymore at this level. She’s been out of motion for therefore lengthy and if she doesn’t wish to struggle me, I suppose I don’t wish to struggle her, too.

“The downside is she’s holding a vital spot within the rankings and there’s so many ladies there preventing twice a yr, thrice a yr, attempting to get to that and that spot is locked. If it’s not her, [Yan Xioanan] can be struggle, she’s forward in any case in order that’s how I’ve to maintain transferring. Just maintain transferring ahead and if the title struggle occurs they usually wish to defend shortly, give it to Carla after that. Maybe I can struggle once more, cool. If not, simply give me another person and we’ll carry on transferring.”

The different downside plaguing Rodriguez by way of a title shot can be timing as a result of she doesn’t wish to sit on the sidelines simply ready for one thing to occur.

While Namajunas and Zhang are set for a rematch at UFC 268 on Nov. 6, the winner wouldn’t seemingly compete once more till someday deep in 2022.

If Esparza finally ends up drawing the winner, then the subsequent title contender can be an excellent longer layoff and that a lot time misplaced is one thing Rodriguez isn’t keen to sacrifice.

“We know as soon as somebody defends the title it’s going to be no less than six months earlier than they struggle once more,” Rodriguez defined. “So that places me in a tricky spot as a result of if I’m going to attend for it too, we’re speaking a couple of yr [long layoff].

“There’s a bunch of women forward of me. If I’m not subsequent in line, I’d must struggle another person and there’s a variety of attention-grabbing fights forward.”

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