It’s no secret that Invicta FC champion Cris “Cyborg” Justino wants a bigger platform to fight on in the UFC.
That’s not to say she simply wants brighter lights or to headline pay-per-views. Anyone would want those things. Everyone wants more star power.
But quite literally, Cyborg wants a bigger platform, where she can fight in her own weight class.
Though she has long wanted a fight with Ronda Rousey, Cyborg has realized it’s not likely to happen. The pushback on such a fight happening at any other weight than 135 pounds has been tremendous. Cyborg would have to make significant changes to her body composition to get down to that weight, something she has been unwilling to do, deeming it unsafe.
What Cyborg is willing to do is lead the charge to keep pressure on the UFC to relent and add a 145-pound women’s featherweight division.
UFC president Dana White has consistently said that he feels the women’s featherweight division is too thin when it comes to high-level competitors. He’s got his eye on implementing a women’s 125-pound division before considering 145 pounds.
“Ronda won’t fight me, Miesha (Tate) is retired, Holly Holm was world boxing champ (at 155 pounds),” she wrote recently on Twitter. “Time to bring in 145 pounds.”
Will it work? No. Not a simple tweet, anyway. But her persistent efforts could eventually lead to the admission of a women’s featherweight division.
After all, the UFC admittedly built the women’s bantamweight division around Rousey at a time when White questioned whether or not there was enough available talent, relying on her star power. Four years later, women are some of the most popular and competitive fighters on the promotion’s roster, and the division is no longer reliant upon Rousey.
The question is simply whether or not the UFC will eventually acquiesce and build a women’s featherweight division, while it still has Cyborg as its centerpiece.
Ronda won’t fight me, Miesha is retired, Holly Holm was world boxing champ 155lbs. Time to bring in 145lbs.
— Cris Cyborg (@criscyborg) November 13, 2016