Cris Cyborg Asks UFC for Release from Contract

February 9, 2013
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Cris Cyborg

Cris Cyborg

Everybody wants to see former Strikeforce champions Ronda Rousey and Cris “Cyborg” Santos fight, but as the days dwindle on, it looks less and less likely that it’s ever going to happen.

Things have devolved to the point that UFC Hall of Famer and current Cyborg manager Tito Ortiz on Friday night told Inside MMA that his client has asked to be released from her contract.

Cyborg was one of the fighters under contract with Zuffa, LLC when the UFC assimilated the Strikeforce roster. Zuffa, LLC is the parent company of both promotions, so Cyborg’s contract carried over to the UFC.

The problem is, Cyborg was the 145-pound champion and often struggled to make weight in that division. Rousey is the UFC’s first 135-pound women’s champion and neither she nor the UFC appear to want her to fight outside of that class anytime soon.

Cyborg, according to Ortiz, is willing to do the fight, but only at a catchweight of 140 pounds.

The UFC seems unwilling to do that, at least not yet. Cyborg is unhappy with the UFC’s alternative offer, which Ortiz said includes the possibility of her remaining under contract, but then fighting for Invicta FC, the burgeoning all-women’s mixed martial arts promotion.

“UFC wanted to sign a huge deal with Cris Cyborg, but they wanted to stick her over in Invicta. It didn’t make sense to me,” said Ortiz on Inside MMA.

“I talked to Cyborg time and time again, asked her and asked her. She said I would love to do a three-fight deal; fourth fight would be against Ronda. Let’s get it done at 140, not be a fight for the 135-pound championship,” he continued.

“For her to get down to 135 pounds is physically impossible, for a woman. For a man it’s different because we have more water weight to take off. For Cris Cyborg to get down to that weight, she’s going to be three to four percent bodyfat.

“I’ve talked to her. She wants to start a family later on; she wants to have kids. Family is what it’s truly about.”

With that in mind, Cyborg just doesn’t want to try and go any lower than 140 pounds, and doesn’t really appreciate the alternatives, since the UFC has no intention of adding a women’s 145-pound division to its offerings any time in the near future.

If the UFC and Rousey aren’t willing to make the deal at 140 pounds, Cyborg is content to cut ties and take her chances elsewhere.

“Right now we’re actually waiting for the UFC to release her,” said Ortiz. “We asked for them to release her. (UFC president Dana White) actually talked to me yesterday. They gave me an offer. I went to Cyborg, she says she doesn’t want to do it, and we just asked for a release.

“If they’re not having a 145-pound weight class, what else can they do? As of now, she’s gonna be released, and maybe we’ll go looking somewhere else.”

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  • how is it possible for tito to f*** up the sport, even when he is not fighting

    • He did not f*** it up, it’s her own choice. And she has a valid point, no need for her to have a UFC-contract if they don’t have a weightclass for her. Please read more closely before you get angry at people 😉

      • you are telling me…you never consider the possibility that tito is pulling strings behind the shade…trying to bargain for a better with the UFC…and forcing UFC to make a 145 division just for her (just like how tito influenced the weight limit of LHW division from 200 to 205 ??)…if anything this a desperate move to threaten ufc to come up with an agreement

        • Oscar Sanchez

          stop hating on tito, how did he ruin this sport ?
          he’s one of the main reasons why mma got where it is today. end of story

        • JimmyPettishardo

          he is her manager dude. Tito is doing a good job by creating this much buzz.

    • jeff

      Because he IS that big of a Fing TOOL. He can’t just go away.

  • drkdisciple

    Ronda must be thrilled! Wouldn’t take long for Cyborg to expose that 1 trick pony but doesn’t look like it will happen now!

    • cyborg is a cheater end of story. she doesnt deserve a title shot and dam sure doesnt deserve the 135 lb champ moving up in weight to fight her.

      • drkdisciple

        Is Cyborg a cheater? Yes she is. Is there any interest in women mma? No there is not. There is only one fight people care about that is Cyborg vs Roussey. That is one fight that Roussey cannot win! Roussey is playing smart right now she is happy fighting all the Betty White’s of the women’s division!

        • Andrew

          At 135 with Cyborg off the juice then Rousey will destroy her. Cyborg is sloppy, has no technique. Her advantage has been the roids and the power they give her.

        • Mark McDowall

          I have to agree with you on this one. Roussey vs Cyborg is the only fight that main stream MMA fans want to see. There are numerous invicta fights that are interesting, but they wont draw near what that fight would. There is interest in WMMA…but this fight would cause HUGE interest and help the cause big time.

          Roussey is the new John Jones of the UFC. She is the golden woman right now. And I think she is using Dana Whites infatuation with her to shield her against this fight. Yes weight is important to these fighters, but a fight @ 140 would be a meeting half way. A TRUE champion will fight anyone IMO. And this fight would draw BIG TIME!

      • Oswald Cobblepott

        Cyborg is a man end of story!

  • Seppo

    It is hard for a man to make it 135

  • Cereal Killer

    How about stay off the roids and stop lifting weights like a man! I bet you could make 135 pretty easy that way. That being said, I don’t care about women’s mma.

  • Advance*

    I like how it’s “impossible” for a 5’8 woman to cut down to 135 pounds. He said she’d have to be at 3-4% body fat. How about instead of thinking about cutting fat or water weight, they shed some of her bulky man-muscle. She’d have plenty of time to do it a healthy way if she took some Invicta fights in the meantime.

    • Maddawgmar

      Absolutely one hundred percent correct. Get off the juice, and she will be able to make weight.

  • Christina

    I don’t understand why Dana wouldn’t want a 145lb class unless he’s not really committed to women’s MMA yet. I like Ronda but maybe he’s just looking at her as nothing more than a short term novelty and the bucks she can generate. UFC157 might be the proving ground he’s at before he decides to expand the weight classes and grow WMMA.

    • Cereal Killer

      Do you really want to see 3 wmma fights on a ppv card? Do you want to see 3 wmma fights in general? People complain that some cards are weak right now. Nobody wants to see a bunch of women clogging up cards. I won’t spend one dollar on that!

      • Christina

        This obviously coming from someone who hasn’t seen any InvictaFC events. The one’s I have seen easily rival most UFC cards. Not to mention the price of UFC PPV. Do I want to see 3 WMMA events? Hell YES!

        • Advance*

          They might rival most UFC cards in the eyes of someone who is into women’s MMA, but a lot of people aren’t. I can sit through a fight and appreciate their skills but it doesn’t interest me nearly as much as men’s MMA. Plus they were already running out of contenders for Cyborg at 145 and Dana himself says Carmouche was the only one that said yes to fighting Rousey. Why are they starting a division when most of the fighters wanted no part in being in the first women’s championship match in UFC history? Plus let’s see what happens if Ronda loses.

    • drkdisciple

      There is barely any talent at 135 why put us all through the pain of a 145 division where there would be even less talent.


    It’s funny that she won’t cut weight cause she does not want to hurt her chances of having a family but taking stanazol for a fight is o.k!

    • b-soc

      Well said!

  • paul

    You guys are all retarded! if you think theres no place in MMA for women. I have been training and fighting MMA, NHB and valetudo and a fan for many years and i can say i have seen maybe 2 boring women’s fights out of 100 and 1 out of every 3 for man. of course theres a place in UFC for women. as far as Rhonda and christein go, Rhonda walks around at 145-150 if she was a real fighter she would take it at a catch wieght (140) and make a lot of money doing win or loose.(probably loose)

    • jeff

      Why should she fight a cheater and a man?

    • brian stevens

      why couldn’t you just say the same thing about cyborg? If she was a real fighter she’d cut weight?

      • MaritalArtist

        Because she is a little bigger than Rousey. It really tough for her to go down that much in weight. 140 probably is the limit. Just like 177.5 is probably the limit for Anderson. He knows a fight at 170 will mean getting his ass taken down at will be GSP.

  • Justin

    cool.. late..don’t let the door hit you in your tucked balls on the way out

  • brian stevens

    Ronda should request Cyborg to under go VADA testing for a catchweight fight. If Cyborg fails she forfeits her entire purse. I guarantee Cyborg won’t do it. Cyborg is a wrecking machine because she is taking hormones to make her a man. Seriously! The drugs she was taking are what is used to spur on a sex change.

    • Oswald Cobblepott

      I think it worked! She is now a he!

  • MuayThaiFood

    Sorry Tito, I’m not buying it. Muscle is 75% water and fat is 20% so his statement regarding the average woman cutting weight is true. It’s going to be harder because they have less water weight to lose. But Cyborg has anything but the average female body type. Instead of getting to 3 or 4% body fat why not lose some of that muscle mass. If you really believe she just puts on all that muscle without trying then you were probably shocked when you heard she was taking steroids. She just needs to change up her strength training, it’s not rocket science.