Karolina Kowalkiewicz Reveals She Would Have Retired From MMA With UFC Vegas 56 Loss

Karolina Kowalkiewicz
Mandatory Credit: Zuffa LLC

One-time UFC strawweight title challenger and former KSW flyweight champion, Karolina Kowalkiewicz has revealed that should she have suffered defeat against two-time opponent, Felice Herrig at UFC Vegas 56 last weekend, she would have called time on her professional mixed martial arts career. 

Kowalkiewicz, a native of Lodz, Poland – managed to snap her five fight losing run at UFC Vegas 56 against Herrig – submitting her two-time opponent with an impressive second round rear-naked choke to add to a previous split decision win over Illinois native.

Following the defeat, Herrig herself called time on her professional mixed martial arts career, however, Kowalkiewicz has revealed that she planned to retire from the sport if Herrig handed her a sixth straight defeat.

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“Yes,” Karolina Kowalkiewicz told Ariel Helwani on The MMA Hour when asked if she would have retired if Herrig defeated her at UFC Vegas 56. “I didn’t say this to nobody.”

Prior to her win against Herrig, Kowalkiewicz, who had suffered a period of four years without a professional victory inside the Octagon – explained how her submission defeat to fellow former title challenger, Jessica Penne forced her to call her career into question.

“Yes, I had a really bad moment in that time and I thought maybe it was time to finish with MMA,” Karolina Kowalkiewicz said. “But after a few months, after a few weeks when I fought and everything, no, I cannot finish with MMA because I love it. Not yet, not yet. Two (more) years for sure, I want to fight.”

“I didn’t train (for) a few months,” Kowalkiewicz said. “I had a break. I didn’t watch MMA. Just relax, work in Poland, and it was really good for me.” 

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Karolina Kowalkiewicz holds a win over former two-time titleholder, Rose Namajunas

Challenging for undisputed strawweight gold at UFC 205 in November 2016 against compatriot, Joanna Jedrzejczyk – Kowalkiewicz has since begun training at American Top Team in Coconut Creek, Florida – alongside the Olsztyn striker. 

Entering the UFC boasting an undefeated 7-0 professional record, Kowalkiewicz landed victories over Randa Markos, Heather Jo Clark, and former two-time champion, Rose Namajuans before her Madison Square Garden title tangle against Jedrzejczyk.

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Aspiring mixed martial arts reporter based in Ireland. Follow along at @Ross_Markey on Twitter for all the latest news, fight announcements, opinion, and feature pieces.