Cris Cyborg gets new UFC deal
Cris Cyborg for me has been a big missed opportunity, for both Cyborg and the UFC. When the UFC are currently so short of stars it’s rather baffling why the two parties seem to have been at war ever since Cyborg signed for the UFC.
Since Cyborg made her UFC debut in May 2016, she has only fought 3 times, two of those were at Catchweight, with the UFC I presume, hoping she would be able to boil down her body to make the Bantamweight limit. Eventually a Featherweight division was created, albeit a division without any true contenders at the moment, and Cyborg managed to get a Title shot and win the vacant belt when she beat Tonya Evinger at UFC 214.
Cyborg’s UFC career so far has been stop start, a possible USADA violation which eventually got cleared up in her favour, but derailed her further.
The reigning Featherweight Champion Germaine de Randamie gave up the belt rather than face her, but hopefully with the belt now around her waist and with her new contract we will now see Cyborg fight more often and the UFC really getting behind her.
The problem will be Cyborg, is so dominant that finding real worthwhile challengers will be difficult. Holly Holm who Cyborg faces next at UFC 219, certainly in my opinion has a style and the skill set to pose real problems. Amanda Nunes is another potential opponent in a possible Superfight, if Nunes can be tempted to share a cage with Cyborg that is.
Obviously the new owners of the UFC will still cling to the hope that Ronda Rousey will return for one last dance, and certainly a Cyborg v Rousey fight will still draw big PPV numbers, but a Rousey return is not likely, at least in my view.
The Featherweight division certainly needs investing in, new talent needs adding to the roster, the UFC not only now needs to get behind Cyborg it needs to get behind the Featherweight division also. Since the inception of the Featherweight division the UFC have of course introduced the Women’s Flyweight division and used The Ultimate Fighter to crown a Champion and give us a whole division of contenders in the process.
While there is the past controversy with Cyborg, she is almost certainly the best Women’s MMA fighter around, so for the benefit of the fans, Cyborg and the UFC, hopefully we will see a more harmonious relationship between Cyborg and the UFC.