Less than 24 hours after UFC bantamweight queen Ronda Rousey claimed bitter rival Cristiane “Cyborg” Santos (Pictured) was one step away from reaching irrelevance, UFC President Dana White concurred with his latest superstar.
Because the UFC is only offering the bantamweight division for women, Cyborg’s manager, Tito Ortiz, requested her release from the promotion because it’s “impossible” for the former Strikeforce featherweight champ to shed the excess 10 pounds required to swim in Rousey’s pond. While White didn’t confirm he granted Cyborg her wish, it sounds as though he’s done trying to accommodate the Brazilian.
“I’m telling you right now, she wants nothing to do with this fight with Ronda,” White expressed following Wednesday’s press conference in England. “We were working with her to get her a deal or whatever – when you send a letter from your lawyer and your doctor saying, ‘I will die if I try to make 135’? It’s the goofiest thing. I’ve never seen anything like it in the fight business.
“Ok, so you don’t want to make 135 yet you wanna talk about fighting Ronda. First of all, you tested positive for steroids and got stripped of your title. And you’re trying to talk about how Ronda doesn’t want to fight you, but she’s the champion at 135. [If] Ronda goes to 140 and does the fight at 140, it’s not even for a title. The fight just makes no sense.”
Prior to Rousey’s meteoric rise to superstardom, White was adamant the ladies would never compete in the UFC. Now that he’s testing the waters with one weight class, don’t think it means he’s opened up the floodgates for multiple women’s divisions. That’s why he contemplated allowing Cyborg to fight for Invicta FC at her desired weight until Rousey proved her worth in the big leagues.
“So what happens is, we’ll figure something out where Cyborg gets some fights, Ronda defends her title a few times and then maybe Ronda moves up to whatever and fights [Cyborg],” White said of his proposal to Ortiz and Co. “They want nothing to do with that.
“Cyborg is pretty much irrelevant right now. I mean, she really is. She’s irrelevant. Go out there and win some fights again, get your name back, stay clean, stay off some steroids, get your career back on track and then we’ll talk. But for her to think that everybody should move around and jump through hoops for her is insane.”
Ortiz will hold a press conference this Friday to discuss Cyborg’s future. However, it appears White may have already let the cat out of the bag. Meanwhile, Rousey defends her bantamweight crown against Liz Carmouche next Saturday at UFC 157.