Following her suspension for testing positive for banned substances, former Strikeforce women’s 145lb champion Cristiane “Cyborg” Justino made her successful return to MMA this past April at Invicta FC 5, defeating Fiona Muxlow via TKO half way through the first round.
“I trained hard for many months, training paid off in the cage,” said Justino. “I love to fight and knock people out.”
Looking back over her year and a half layoff, Justino told MMAWeekly.com that she never once stopped thinking about her return or preparing for it.
“I thought a lot about my return and I thought about everything,” she said. “I love to fight, fighting is my life.
“Even though I was not fighting I was training every day. I had plenty of time to focus on other things but now it’s time to become the best fighter in the world and concentrate on winning the belt Saturday night.”
As Justino mentioned, she will be making her second fight back this Saturday night in Kansas City, in a rematch with Marloes Coenen for the Invicta FC 145-pound championship.
“Cyborg” and Coenen first fought on Jan. 30, 2010 for the Strikeforce title. Justino defeated Coenen by TKO in the third round.
“I’ll fight anyone, I don’t run away from fights,” said Justino. “I expect same results, except this time I hope to knock her out sooner.”
Getting an opportunity to rebuild her career in Invicta with the support of Shannon Knapp – who never wavered in her support – has helped Justino remain focused and helped her establish her goals for her return.
“I love Shannon, and I am a big fan of hers just as she is of me,” said Justino. “I am glad to fight for her promotion, she really loves MMA.
“I will represent Invicta as best I can but the door is open to any of those who claim to be the best to step forward and meet me half way at 140-pounds.”
Justino concluded, “At this time in the world, winning and being the best for my fans is my main priority. I see myself as champion and the pound-for-pound best!”