After Conor McGregor’s violent attack on a bus two days before UFC 223, Rose Namajunas admitted that she was close to withdrawing from the event.
The Irishman’s moment of madness led to both Michael Chiesa and Ray Borg suffering injuries which forced them out of their fights, as well McGregor’s teammate and close friend Artem Lobov being pulled from his fight with Alex Caceres for his involvement in the attack.
McGregor eventually turned himself in, and was charged with three counts of assault and one count of criminal mischief. It could have gotten worse though, as Namajunas nearly pulled out of her title fight with Joanna Jedrzejczyk as she was shook up by the incident.
“Yeah, I did,” Namajunas said at the UFC 223 post-fight press conference, when asked if she considering pulling out. “But I think a lot of times leading up to many fights I’ll question that. I’ll doubt myself or I’ll question myself, but the voice was strong this time. (Transcription by MMA Fighting)
“The [dolly] nearly came at my window. Thankfully to the bus driver he was on point. He was backing up the bus as it came to my window but it ended up hitting Michael Chiesa in the head instead unfortunately. So thanks Michael. It shook me up because I didn’t how far it was going to escalate.”
For Namajunas, the decision to remain on the card was a wise one. “Thug” Rose proved that her first fight against Jedrzejczyk wasn’t a fluke, as she went all five rounds with the Pole picking up a 49-46 unanimous decision across all three judges’ scorecards.
“All the guys inside wanted to fight back and jump out of the bus but I don’t know if they are going to open the door and all come in. They are obviously not directly after me but I’m caught in this scenario. My imagination goes crazy through all the things I’ve been through in the past. I know anyone could have had a gun or a knife. I jump to the negative pretty quickly. It was a lot of thoughts going into this fight but I’m grateful to be in one piece and be happy, healthy and safe.”
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