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12th Jun 2018

Carla Esparza accuses Claudia Gadelha of greasing in UFC 225 fight

Quite the accusation

Darragh Murphy

UFC strawweight Carla Esparza has accused Claudia Gadelha of cheating at UFC 225.

The first ever 115lbs champion in the UFC has claimed that Gadelha was greasing before and during their clash on the prelims of Saturday night’s card after dropping a split decision to the Brazilian.

Greasing is the process of rubbing oil or lotion into a fighter’s skin so that it will be more difficult to keep hold of them in grappling exchanges and Esparza is convinced that Gadelha was guilty of it last weekend.

“She cheated in the fight; she greased before the fight,” Esparza said on The MMA Hour. “I was considering saying something to the referee in between [rounds]. I was going to say, ‘She’s greasing! She’s greasing’, but I didn’t really know how to go about it.”

Several fighters over the years have been accused of greasing, with the most famous case being BJ Penn’s complaints about Georges St-Pierre in 2009.

Having watched the fight back, Esparza is in no doubt that Gadelha used illegal measures to avoid submissions.

“It’s pretty shady to me. I re-watched the fight and my hands were slipping right off,” Esparza continued. “Even when I was trying to grab armbars during the fight my arms kept slipping down. She’s a cheater, but it doesn’t really surprise me. In my opinion, she’s been a pretty dirty fighter throughout, so it is what it is.”