ByElias Cepeda, writer at
Elias Cepeda

If you've heard that Conor McGregor is the best trash-talker in MMA, you heard wrong. That honor belongs to strawweight champion Joanna Jedrzejczyk.

As Joanna "Champion" readies to defend her title this Saturday against Karolina Kowalkiewicz at UFC 205, we bring you our five favorite examples of the brash warrior's psychological warfare. Read on for our ranked top J-Disses, and then let us know your favorite moments from the Polish champ in the comments section!

5. Putting Maryna Moroz in her place

Here's a photo of Joanna with Bo Jackson, because that's awesome | David Banks-USA TODAY Sports
Here's a photo of Joanna with Bo Jackson, because that's awesome | David Banks-USA TODAY Sports

In April of 2015, Ukranian prospect Maryna Moroz made a stunning UFC debut in Jedrzejczyk's native Poland, winning by arm bar submission. Afterwards, she found the champ in the audience and called her out.

By August, Moroz suffered her first career loss, to Valerie Letourneau. In November, Jedrzejczyk in turn faced and defeated Letourneau in Australia.

Afterwards, she took the time to make sure the world made the proper connections and understood just how far away Moroz was from her with a post on Instagram, showing her knocking Letourneau down with a punch.

Joanna "Champion" accompanied the photo with this written message to Moroz: “If you talk the talk you better be ready to walk the walk!! All the best to U in the future."

4. Talking trash to Claudia Gadelha's coach on TUF

While coaching a season of The Ultimate Fighter opposite number one strawweight contender, Claudia Gadelha, Joanna tried many times to intimidate her challenger. The two were getting set to meet again in July of 2016 after fighting to a razor-close split decision in 2014 which Jedrzejczyk won.

Gadelha got more than her share of calm, clever and confident retorts during the season, and showed that she wasn't intimidated at all when she pushed Joanna through five brutal rounds in their rematch. Still, Joanna's sublime bullying was on full display, especially when she walked up to Claudia's boxing coach (who Gadelha said didn't understand or speak any English), wearing her title belt and began taunting him at the TUF gym.

"You're gonna cry," she said, as you can see and hear in the above video.

"Look at this - it's your last time. You want this so badly, huh?"

We're not condoning bullying, but goodness gracious, it takes something for a 115lb woman to walk up to a male professional fighter and challenge him.

3. Penne pasta

Joanna often uses props to make her point, like when she hands condescending gifts to opponents after weigh-ins. Before fighting Jessica Penne in June of 2015 in her first title-defense, Joanna posted a photo on social media that meant to serve as pun prophecy.

The message to the image of Joanna angrily chomping down on a serving of penne pasta was clear - I will chew you up, swallow you down, digest you and then...ok, we may have lost the point in literal translation here, but you get the symbolism.

2. Meta-reflection trash talk

After upsetting Carla Esparza with a second-round KO in 2015 at UFC 185 to become world champion, Joanna told The MMA Hour's Ariel Helwani that she believes her pre-fight trash talk had "broken" Esparza before they ever stepped into the cage together. "I think I break her," she said.

"She didn't know what to expect. Maybe she thought that I am crazy. I am really nice. But not in the cage."

With that, Joanna had actually managed to use armchair psychological analysis of previous trash to create new trash talk.

1. "Why you smiling?"

Above is the trash talk that Joanna believes mentally broke then-champion Carla Esparza. Before their UFC 185 showdown, the two appeared at a press conference and squared up and posed side-by-side for photographers. Esparza, then the number one strawweight in the world, posed seemingly innocuously with one finger in the air and her title-belt over a shoulder.

Seeing this, Joanna appeared to lose it. "Don't do this," she turned and told Esparza, stone-faced.

Joanna considered holding one finger up in the air, her move, dammit, and seemed genuinely pissed-off that Esparza deigned to do the same thing. It's that type of obsessively competitive pettiness that often typifies champions, like Joanna was about to become.

"You cannot do this, you know?"

Esparza was speechless. As she walked off the stage, afterwards, smiling, Joanna continued to badger her, offended. "Why you smiling," she asked, as can be seen in the video, around the 2:35 mark.

"I am going to take this on Saturday, so keep on smiling."

It is important to remember that, at this point, most of the MMA world didn't give Joanna much of a chance to beat Esparza. Esparza's dominant grappling seemed like a tough match-up for Joanna's striking.

Joanna believed in herself, however, and turned out one of the most one-sided MMA title fights in history. And, to this day, she's still the champion she knew she would become that day.


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