Though UFC featherweight champion Cris “Cyborg” Justino had been adamant that she wanted to fight a “true” 145-pounder in her next title defense, she announced on Monday that she had agreed to a champion vs. champion superfight with Amanda Nunes.
“I have agreed to fight Amanda Nunes on July 7 in Las Vegas as part of UFC 226 and International Fight Week,” Cyborg wrote on her Facebook page.
“I am now waiting for my manager to work with the UFC on a bout agreement so we can make Cyborg vs. Nunes ‘The Super Fight’ official. #CyborgNation, us versus them!”
Cyborg won the UFC featherweight championship by defeating former Invicta FC champion Tonya Evinger at UFC 214 in July of 2017. She went on to defend the belt against former UFC bantamweight champion Holly Holm, who is also a former world champion boxer, at UFC 219 to close out her 2017.
Following the victory over Holm, Cyborg said that she was open to eventually fighting Nunes, but wanted to face a top 145-pound contender first in order to continue building the division in the Octagon.
“Having re-established myself as the world champion at 145 pounds, I feel it is my obligation to fight the No. 1 contender at 145 pounds in my next fight,” Cyborg said on her official website early in January.
“I have fought four consecutive fights against girls who have come up from 135 pounds to fight me because they were ‘superfights’ for the fans. Besides Lina Lansburg (I fought her at 140) none of these girls had been fighting at featherweight.”
Despite Cyborg’s objections, UFC president Dana White continued his public campaign, telling everyone that he fully intended to make a fight between Cyborg and Nunes for the next UFC featherweight championship fight, adding that Nunes has fought several times at 145 pounds during her career.
“Originally (Amanda Nunes) was a 145-pound fighter. She was brought into Strikeforce to fight Cyborg. It’s just happening a little later than everybody had planned. Amanda’s ready and that’s the fight everybody wants to see.”
Although it sounds as if there are not yet any contracts in place, Nunes had already been lobbying for the fight, and now that Cyborg has verbally agreed to it, it’s more than likely to happen.
If Nunes wins the fight, she would become the first female UFC champion to hold titles in two divisions.
I have agreed to fight Amanda Nunes Leoa July 7th in Las Vegas as part of #UFC226 and #InternationalFightWeek. I am now…