Cris Cyborg experienced her first professional setback in 13 years at the hands of two-division champion Amanda Nunes. The former UFC women’s featherweight juggernaut now looks to build up the division she once demolished.
Cyborg has had a change of heart regarding her fight future since falling short to Nunes. In the past, Cyborg expressed interest in fighting out her UFC contract and migrating over to the world of professional boxing. Now Cyborg has her eyes firmly set on a contract extension with mixed martial arts’ number one promotion.
”I want to continue working. The UFC is a great platform to continue [building] my division. I think that even Amanda felt good at 145, other fighters have as well, because they don’t hurt (their bodies) that much, but that’s out of my control,” she told Brazilian outlet PVT (transcribed by MMA Fighting). “My manager will meet them and see what’s the next step, but if they decide to remove the division, I will definitely continue shining somewhere else, like I’ve always done. Let’s see what happens.”
Cyborg first and foremost wants a rematch with Nunes but agreed a potential bout with Megan Anderson at featherweight “would be a good fight.” That being said, she has no idea if the UFC “will invest in the division or not.”
”I don’t know what they will do moving forward. I will keep fighting no matter where I am. My fans love watching my fights,” she said. “If they decide to remove my division, and remove me from the UFC and let me go, I think the UFC would be losing with that, and the promotion that signs me would be winning. My fans follow me wherever I go. I’m very thankful because my fans are with me no matter if I win or lose.”
The recently dethroned featherweight titan even has a venue in mind for her next fight: May’s UFC 237 in Curitiba, Brazil. The event currently boasts Rose Namajunas vs. Jessica Andrade for the UFC women’s strawweight championship. Cyborg made her UFC debut vs. Leslie Smith at UFC 198 in Curitiba in May 2016.
“It was special for me. It was eight years after my last fight in Curitiba, it was my UFC debut, and everybody waited for that. It was really special,” she said of the fight with Smith. “I’m open to fighting in May in Curitiba. It could be a rematch with Amanda, but she said she wants to wait two years, or it could be with another opponent they want. Curitiba is my home. They have many athletes to sell out [the stadium] and put on a great event in Curitiba.”
“I asked for the rematch, but if it doesn’t happen, my life will continue. I will continue training and wait for my next fight. I lost my first fight and asked for a rematch, 13 years have passed and I never had it, and that didn’t stop my legacy,” said Cyborg, noting how the broken win streak is a weight off her shoulders. “I kept fighting.”
2019 is a year of rebuilding for Cyborg, whose 13 years of dominance was abruptly ended by Nunes in just 51 seconds at UFC 232.