Claudia Gadelha has words for Carla Esparza: "You want money? Step up and Fight"
Claudia Gadelha went on the offensive on Saturday while launching into a tirade aimed at former UFC champion Carla Esparza on her Instagram account.
The altercation occurred after Esparza said she was selling her Harley-Davidson motorcycle to help ends meet after shoulder surgery kept her out of action for over a year with only two fights during 2015 and 2016.
Esparza admitted in the post that she was offered a bout against Gadelha, but wanted the chance to first knock off some ring rust and get a full training camp after beating Juliana Lima on short notice in April.
Gadelha then made her own post where she tore into Esparza for not accepting the fight against her and accusing her of turning down another opportunity to meet her just recently.
"What a weak fighter Carla is. She doesn't want to fight the best, she makes excuses so she can get an easy fight," Gadelha wrote. "I want to be the best. For my last fight, I asked to fight the best in the division. Unfortunately she don't feel in the same way. Carla and other names in the division turned down the fight. I was left with no other option than Cortney (Casey).
"I took that fight with the promise that if I won, I would fight Carla. Now she is still refusing to fight me."
Gadelha recently defeated Casey by unanimous decision to get back in the win column after suffering a loss to strawweight champion Joanna Jedrzejczyk earlier this year.
After the fight, Gadelha wasted no time calling out Esparza and now it appears she's doubling down on her request after the former champion spoke out about her recent financial woes.
"You want money little girl? Step in the Octagon and fight. I have the cars I want, two houses and money in the bank at 27 years old. You know why? Because I accept challenges. I fought twice in the last six months and I didn't choose none of my fights and I will never choose," Gadelha said. "I lost my fight for the title with pride and I was not waiting for a easy fight to get back in the win column. I was out for a year before fight for the title and you are talking about eight months out?
"The first thing I said when I talked to the matchmakers was: Please give me somebody on the top five! You can find excuses and run but you won't disappear, I will see you soon."
Gadelha was clearly riled up while taking aim at Esparza, but it didn’t take long for the former "Ultimate Fighter" season 20 winner to return fire.
She made her own Instagram post just minutes later while reminding Gadelha that were twice matched up in Invicta Fighting Championships, but neither bout actually happened.
Gadelha suffered an injury that stopped the original bout from taking place before falling out of the next scheduled fight after she fell ill following the official weigh-ins for the event.
"If I remember correctly, I showed up, weighed in, and stepped in the cage to fight you Claudia Gadelha — two times and you did not show up," Esparza wrote. "The second time because you cut so much freaking weight that you went to the hospital.
"I also showed up on TUF 20 expecting to fight you — that makes it three times — and again, you did not show up. Why? Because you were too heavy to make the weight! Sorry if I walk around at 125lbs, and you get up to 155lbs. Too scared to fight people your own size?"
Esparza reiterated that she's more than happy to face Gadelha in the near future, but she wants to get a fight under her belt first after so much inactivity in the last two years. Esparza missed almost all of 2015 after losing her title and then going into shoulder surgery that kept her out for the remainder of the year.
"I've proven time after time I will show up to fight you, but just because you scream and cry like a little brat, does not mean you will bully me into your way," Esparza said. "Trust me, the fight will happen. I wasn't scared to fight you then, I'm not scared to now.
"I haven't had a full camp in two years, so I think it's fair to ask for that. When I take this fight, I want to be at my best. I'm going in there to win."
Judging by these exchanges, Gadelha and Esparza are destined to meet at some point in the future, but when it will happen remains to be seen.