When Cris Cyborg fought Lina Lansberg in the headliner of UFC Brasilia back in September, there was a fair amount of backlash. Not over the choice of opponent - although few knew who Lansberg was - but over the continued insistence that Cyborg’s UFC bouts be contested at 140lbs, despite fighting a woman who had competed at 145 just one bout before.
The strategy - at least from a distance - seemed to be that the UFC was trying to lure name fighters from 135 to fight Cyborg at 140, by showing that Cyborg could make the weight consistently. Now that she’s done that, it seems she’s ready for the UFC to get her a big fight booked, or she’s headed back to 145.
In a recent interview with Sub Radio, Cyborg revealed that while she’s “open to a super fight,” she doesn’t think she’ll “cut again to 140 too soon...”
“You know, the first time I made 140 in Brazil, Curitiba, the first time I did it was because it would be in my city,” Cyborg said, revealing why she decided to take catchweight bouts in the first place. “And then second reason was because it was UFC Brazil. The main thing is to do is open an opportunity, maybe to do super fight with Ronda Rousey at 140. And I just showed them that I can make 140 for a super fight. And my second fight was supposed to be 145, I was supposed to be to defend my belt. And then again, I had the opportunity to fight 140 in Brazil. And I really respect all my opponents, but the girl in my last fight (Lina Lansberg), nobody knows her, and she’s had like 70 Muay Thai fights. She’s a really, really good opponent, but for me to sacrifice to make 140, I’d like a super fight. You know, something the fans would like to watch. Because my last opponent, her last win was at 145 pounds. And then sometimes, I don’t see it’s worth making 140 to make a fight like this. If you want a super fight, doesn’t matter the weight – It can be 150, can be 155, 145. But the thing is, I cannot kill myself at the time to make 140 for a normal fight.”
Cyborg went on to confirm that she’s essentially looking for Ronda Rousey or nothing when it comes to fighting again at 140 lbs. And in the mean time, she’s been trying to convince the UFC to let her defend her Invicta FC title inside the Octagon.
“I always tell the idea, you know, have girls at 145, you just have to open the opportunities,” Cyborg said when asked about defending her Invicta belt in the UFC. “For sure you have them. You know, you have like two events (that have women at) 145 pounds – Bellator, Invicta. And you have other events that now opened (the division). World Series of Fighting have, I think maybe 154 or maybe 155. They just signed the Olympic girl from Judo (Kayla Harrison). They have girls. If you want the opportunity, they have the girls. They can’t have the excuse that they don’t have girls. And then about Ronda, her next fight – man, I don’t know how many people are gonna watch it. I don’t think it’s gonna break one million pay-per-views. I really don’t know. My last fight, I did like 1.3 (million viewers). People like watching me. Doesn’t matter if it’s 145. It could be 135, it could be 140 – people like watching my fights, and I think if you make a 145 division, for sure (people will watch). They made a 135-pound division with 10 girls. If you find 10 girls at 145, you can make the division. It wouldn’t be too hard. You have to do this.”
And while she’s frustrated that the UFC doesn’t seem interested in bringing a featherweight women’s division to the promotion, it doesn’t sound like she’s planning on stopping fighting anytime soon.
“I’m really healthy,” Cyborg said of her career longevity, “I don’t have bad injuries. For me, I think another three years, four years I want to keep fighting. But this is the thing, it doesn’t matter if the UFC don’t open my division, for sure I’m gonna fight in other events, because people, all my fans follow me wherever I’m going. I love my job and I’m looking at four years. I really don’t know.”
“I feel my body, I can be forever, but of course I’d like to have a kid too. But I don’t feel I want to retire soon. I stay motivated every day, train every day, and it’s a more important when people to appreciate your work. It motivates you more to keep going.”
Cyborg also spoke about Ronda Rousey’s upcoming title shot at UFC 207, and about her continued belief that a super fight with Rousey will never actually happen. She also gave her thoughts on Miesha Tate’s recent retirement, so check out the whole interview.