by Ken Pishna – MMAWeekly.com
Strikeforce women’s middleweight champion Cris “Cyborg” Santos hasn’t lost a bout since her professional mixed martial arts debut more than five years ago. She’s reeled off nine straight victories since then, including three complete thrashings under the Strikeforce banner.
She obviously doesn’t plan on losing on Saturday night, and it doesn’t appear that Strikeforce believes she will lose either.
Her opponent, Jan Finney, is a tough fighter with an 8-7 record, entering the bout coming off of four straight victories, but hardly anyone, outside of her own camp, is picking her to upset Cyborg.
Anything can happen in mixed martial arts. Nothing is set in stone yet, but Strikeforce appears to already have a bead on Cyborg’s next defense.
“After this fight, should Cyborg win, I think Erin Toughill will be the next opponent for Cristiane Cyborg,” Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker told HDNet reporter Ron Kruck on Friday night.
Strikeforce has been pressing to differentiate itself by being very inclusive of women’s mixed martial arts. They also have a women’s welterweight champion in Sarah Kaufman. Kaufman faces Roxanne Modafferi on July 23 in Everett, Wash.
Beyond that event, it appears the next 135-pound women’s challenger could come from a tournament that Coker says the promotion will focus its efforts on after Saturday night’s “Fedor vs. Werdum” event.