Former Strikeforce featherweight champion Cristiane Justino is picking up right where she left off now that she's been turned loose in the Invicta FC 145-pound division. The Brazilian captured five straight wins for Shannon Knapp and Co., picking up the division title along the way, and shows no signs of slowing down.
So ... about that Octagon debut.
The chance of her crossing over to Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) is currently parked on the corner of Slim & None, now that longtime nemesis Ronda Rousey has been evicted from the women's bantamweight penthouse, in favor of new owner Holly Holm.
And nobody in ZUFFA wants to mess with that hierarchy, according to manager George Prajin (via ESPN.com):
"Our only hope is a Hail Mary -- a longshot. It's the UFC seeing value in a Holly Holm vs. Cyborg catchweight fight. They have a division to protect. If Holly fights Cris at UFC 200 and gets smashed, it lowers her value as a champion. I'm sure they don't want to do that. We still feel Cris is the only money fight out there for Holly besides a Rousey rematch. If Holly beats Miesha Tate [at UFC 196 on March 5] and then Ronda decides she doesn't want to fight or loses to Holly again, the only fight that would make sense for Holly would be Cris. But I understand the UFC's position right now. We can't tell them how to run their business."
Not that it matters at this point, as Justino already made it clear that cutting down to 135 pounds after competing her entire career at featherweight just isn't going to happen, especially with United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) handing down a ban on intravenous hydration.
I guess from this point forward, the only time we'll get to see "Holm vs. Cyborg" is here.