Note: This FanPost does not reflect the opinion of the Bloody Elbow, SBNation or Vox Media editorial teams.
Most of the time when I write fanposts, it's inspired by a post I read on BE; this time is no different. Someone, I can't remember who, suggested that Cyborg is facing an unfair double-standard in getting harsher treatment than most other male fighters caught using PEDs. Reflecting on my own behaviour, I realized that I was certainly guilty of this. I've been bagging on Cyborg a lot harder than I have on other guilty fighters.
But my reason for this actually has nothing to do with Cyborg's being a woman or her appearance having caused long-time suspicion of PED usage. Rather, my problem with Cyborg comes not just from her getting busted, but from her behaviour as her suspension winds down.
The reason I've been hard on Cyborg and think Ronda Rousey 100% in the right in not taking the fight at 145 is due to Santos' unjustified sense of entitlement. Most fighters who come back from a suspension for banned substances come and quietly try to put it behind them, moving on with their career and accepting the fact that they have to build their careers back up from the wreckage their cheating has wrought.
Cyborg seems to think she's the exception to this rule. Sure, she was stripped of her title, has fought once in two years, and hasn't picked up a win on her resume since 2010, but all of this is immaterial to Santos, who clearly thinks herself OWED a match with Ronda Rousey at HER weight. Santos as actually come right out and said that she still considers herself a champion/titleholder and the #1 pound for pound female fighter on the planet.
The problem is, of course, that that's downright delusional. The way most conventional rankings work, a fighter who has fought so infrequently generally can't hold onto a #1 spot. And the title was stripped from her. And in her absence, her sport has moved on without her and a new star has replaced and outshone her. This is the price that Cyborg had to pay for her cheating and the consequences that any suspended top fighter faces. What galls me is that Cyborg is acting as though she SHOULDN'T have to accept these consequences. She's demanding a fight with the #1 ranked and most popular female fighter on the planet right now on the basis that she, Cyborg, is still a champion and the #1 ranked fighter on the planet and a big enough star to carry her own division. These are the things that her cheating cost her, and rightfully should have, but Cyborg is acting like these things were never taken away from her.
The fact is that when you're coming back from a PED-related suspension, one that saw you stripped of your title, you aren't owed a goddamned thing. You're not entitled to immediate, big money superfights or, at least, you shouldn't be. That Cyborg goes one step further in overestimating her leverage in even going so far as to demand Rousey, the #1 WMMA fighter in rank and popularity and a current champion, to move up to HER weight shows how delusional Cris really is.
Rousey is a champion, Cris is not. Cris has not recorded a win in two years and she was caught using PEDs. Coming back from a suspension, she is not entitled to simply resume her career as though nothing happened and exercise the same degree of leverage that she may have had in 2009-2010.
And that's the root of my current dislike for Cyborg: the utterly unjustified sense of entitlement. That entitlement should have been stripped along with her title when she tested positive for anabolic steroids. Unfortunately, it seems Cyborg believes that she has lost neither. Fact is, however, that during her suspension, she lost her title, she lost her spot as #1 female fighter in popularity and in rank, and she lost her right to demand her own division. The sooner she accepts this, the sooner she'll stop being so bloody grating.