For as long as the UFC only promotes one women's weight class, at 135-pounds, Cristiane Cyborg will be on the outside looking in. Her manager, Tito Ortiz, explains why she can't get down to that weight.
When Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) President Dana White finally relented and agreed to promote women's mixed martial arts (MMA), he did so under one condition: there would be only one weight class, the 135-pound division Ronda Rousey is currently champion of.
That presents a big problem for the ruler of the 145-pound division, Cristiane "Cyborg" Justino.
"Cyborg" has maintained for as long as there's been a discussion about it that she simply can't cut that much weight. Now, her manager, Tito Ortiz, expands on it and offers a compromise in an interview with MMAInterviews.tv:
"Let's do a rematch and have a chance of her cutting to 135-pounds, possibly, if it's possible she can do it. It's just really tough, like I said. Just being with Cyborg and wrestling her myself, she's a big girl. To make it down to 135-pounds, it would be kind of health threatening, I think. But at the same time, I would love for the fight to happen. Let's meet in the middle.
"For a woman to cut that much weight... You gotta understand, she's small. She's cutting from 170 down trying to make 135, that's a big, big, big, big cut. That's a lot for a woman to cut. And it's just health reasons when it comes down to it. We want to see an exciting fight. Do it at 140-pounds, I think that would make the best difference.
"I support Ronda Rousey. I hope she does well and I hope she wins. I think the biggest fight in women's mixed martial arts is Cyborg vs. Ronda Rousey. At the same time, I wish Ronda can win the fight and just keep building for this big fight to happen."
That sounds to me like Ortiz is offering a 140-pound catchweight bout -- admittedly a bit unwelcoming due to the fact that a title wouldn't be on the line -- while saying a rematch, were it necessary, could possibly take place at 135-pounds.
Something tells me Rousey won't like the compromise.
Even White has all but proclaimed the fight dead in the water, as he's maintaining his stance that he will only promote one weight class and if "Cyborg" can't cut down to it, well, that's her problem.
It's just too bad quite possibly the biggest fight in women's MMA history is going to be sacrificed for it.