Sean Strickland calls out the coaches of Rose Namajunas and Aspen Ladd for predatory behavior

UFC middleweight contender Sean Strickland often shares controversial takes – but this time he might actually have a point. The provocateur weighed in on the creepy relationships between Aspen Ladd and Rose Namajunas’s and their boyfriend coaches. Strickland believes that both are victims of predatory behavior.


Last year, Aspen Ladd’s corner went viral when her boyfriend/coach Jim West shared some very harsh criticism in between rounds. Miesha Tate was among the first to campaign against  Jim West for his approach.

While Tate and many others were quick to point out West was out for a place in the spotlight – Aspen Ladd didn’t see it that way. On a previous occasion a ‘tough love approach’ from West made her snap out of her daze and knock out her opponent.

Following the backlash West released an apology.

‘Tonight was not our night,” West wrote in a statement on Instagram. “It’s been our night many many times at the highest level but not tonight. I blame myself. Though it may not be my fault. it’s not up for debate. I take all the blame. Yes after the first couple rounds I may have been a little harsh but I know aspen and at that time technical conversation was not in the cards being down 3 rounds. Nonetheless I own it and I am sorry @aspenladd from the bottom of my heart [sic] I will continue to be better each time.”

Sean Strickland weighed in on the topic and claimed Ladd has Stockholm syndrome.

“Sooooooooooo I’m pretty sure Aspen Ladd is suffering from Stockholm syndrome…….. lmao!!!!!!!! I didn’t really care about the corner video but when you add some other facts to the situation it’s a little f*cking creepy lmao!!!” Strickland wrote

Not stopping there, ‘Tarzan’ posted a follow-up tweet. It looks like Strickland just found out that Ladd has been training with West since the age of 12, and prompted him to bring up the old topic.


Lastly, Strickland took a swipe at UFC women’s strawweight champion Rose Namajunas and her relationship with her coach Pat Barry. Namajunas started training with her boyfriend at the age of 14 while Barry was 27.

“Is Jim West and Pat Berry the Weinstine of mma? Or is Michael Jackson a better comparison…
[Netflix] is currently contacting [Aspen Ladd] and [Rose Namajunas] for a TV series lol!!!!! OK I’m done gotta spar.” Strickland wrote.

Pat celebrated his 42nd birthday in July of last year. Meanwhile Rose, 13 years his junior, is just 29. But this of course isn’t that shocking in our modern day and age, what is however – is that the two had met many many years ago. Here’s how Rose described coming into Duke Roufus’ kickboxing gym on her joint appearance with Pat on Joe Rogan’s ultra popular podcast:

Rose: Yeah I did one season of wrestling as a senior and then I did kickboxing and I met Pat at Duke Roufus’ gym in Milwaukee and that’s kinda where I saw guys like him all those dudes doing it as professions and I was like maybe I can do it as a profession too, you know.

Joe: And how old were you at the time?

Rose: I first walked into Duke’s gym I was like – I think I was 14, and then I left ’cause of ’cause I had other obligations and like stopped training for a while but I was still doing other sports and stuff. And I came back when I was like 17.

Joe: So you were really thinking at the time, maybe this was something I could do as a career?

Rose: You know, not for sure but definitely like I saw – I was always gonna be involved in martial arts no matter what as a hobby… no matter what.

You can read more about Pat and Rose’s journey here.