To say things have been frosty between Cris Cyborg and Dana White leading up to the final fight on her UFC contract would be an understatement. We’d describe the temperature as having more of an apocalyptic ice age feel to it.
White spent the entire lead-up to UFC 240 declaring Cyborg was afraid to rematch Amanda Nunes, who knocked her out in 51 seconds last December. Cyborg repeatedly called White a liar. And if you thought things would get better after Cyborg dominated Felecia Spencer (highlights of that here) in Edmonton? Ha, oh no they didn’t.
From a certain angle, you can make sense of White’s actions. Half the attention surrounding UFC 240 focused on the beef between the UFC president and former featherweight champ, so it was pretty effective promotion in a way. He clearly doesn’t think Cyborg is going to re-sign with the promotion, so he’s burying her to make her less valuable on the open market.
It’s just business, a sentiment Cris Cyborg echoed during her post-fight press conference appearance ... although she certainly sounded sick of this particular brand of business at points.
”A lot of things are going on, we have a lot of issues, me and the UFC,” Cyborg said. “I’m not complain about anything, but it’s not just the fight. Because the people, the media don’t see the things inside but a lot of things have to work on for me to continue to stay. Everybody knows that I don’t have the best and greatest relationship with UFC. I don’t have the best relationship with Dana White.”
“He’s bully me around, bully me on the internet. I suffer bullying everywhere because of this. I have a daughter, I have a father and I don’t think it’s nice and he’s never, ever said, ‘I’m sorry’ to me or told me anything about this. And it’s just going to continue, it’s not finished.”
“He’s saying I’m scared to fight Amanda Nunes,” she continued. “Saying I don’t want to fight her, this is liar because I text him after the fight saying I want the rematch. This is don’t help me in growing my brand. This is damaging my brand. And for keeping me working for promotion, I don’t want somebody to damage my brand. I want to grow together. So we’re going to have to take a little time and see what is going to be better for me.”
”It’s not just about money, it’s about respect.”
And in an effort to show she was more than willing to fight Amanda Nunes again should a deal be worked out, Cris wore a ‘Cyborg vs. Nunes 2’ shirt to the press conference. Or at least she tried to.
”UFC make me take it off,” she said. “It’s just saying ‘Rematch January 2020.’ Just to show people after my last fight I asked for the rematch. I’m not a liar about this.”
What do you think, Manaics? Any chance we’ll see these two fighting again or is Cyborg headed out the door?