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Former UFC women’s featherweight champion Cris Cyborg is currently in discussions with all the world’s leading MMA advertising about a new contract, according to her agent Audie Attar, who spoke to ESPN’s Ariel Helwani on his MMA show. Cyborg has just one fight left her contract after her shocking KO loss to Amanda Nunes at UFC 232, however her and her agents have been clear with the UFC they are interested in a reunion.
According to Attar, Cyborg hopes to fight at UFC 237, which takes place this May in Curitiba, Brazil. The principal event of this event will be headlined by UFC women’s strawweight champion Rose Namajunas taking on No. 1 competitor Jessica Andrade, and it makes a lot of sense to pump up the undercard using a fighter of Cyborg’s fame and name value, especially in Brazil. If Cyborg does fight at UFC 237, that will be the final fight on her contract, as he has only 1 fight left on it without any champion’s clause because of losing the belt.
The UFC will be smart to bring back Cyborg on a brand new deal. She has proven to be a bit of a pay-per-view draw at a time when the UFC needs fighters who market displays, and although she won’t be economical to re-sign, she is shown to be well worth the money. As far as women’s fighters go, there aren’t many more exciting fighters than Cyborg and there sure are not many with much more name value than she’s. The UFC absolutely should re-sign her provided that the ask is appropriate.
Although it would be nice to see Cyborg get a rematch with Nunes seeing as though she had been on a 13-year win streak before losing her belt in mad fashion, it is very unlikely Nunes would take that fight. The rumor is that Nunes would like to fight Holly Holm next for the UFC women’s bantamweight championship, which would leave Cyborg without a next logical competitor. There aren’t too many featherweights from the UFC at this time, but the two which do stand out are Megan Anderson and Cat Zingano. Anderson just beat Zingano in contentious fashion after a toenail slit her eye and the fight was stopped in the first round at UFC 232, but Anderson did catch her hands raised. If the UFC desired to do Cyborg against Anderson in Brazil, that is a struggle which makes a lot of sense.
Cyborg will fight out that last battle of her contract, but in the case she will enter free agency, she will have a lot of suitors. Obviously, Bellator would take a run at her as her ex-Strikeforce promoter Scott Coker is in control of the company. But I would suspect RIZIN and ONE would likewise take a run at her, not to mention the WWE, Golden Boy MMA as well as some boxing promotions. Fundamentally, Cyborg will have plenty of alternatives to choose from. But if her agent is being sincere, she wants to return to the UFC, and it might be excellent to get MMA fans if that’s what occurs.
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