Cyborg Released from UFC
Immense disappointment echoes through the vast population of women's MMA fans as Cris "Cyborg" Santos has officially been released from the UFC.
UFC President Dana White announced her departure in a media scrum following a UFC on FUEL TV 7 press conference on Wednesday. When asked if Santos no longer had any ties to the promotion, White simply responded "Yeah."
"Cyborg" has never fought in the UFC but was under contract with the organization, which was trying to get Santos to fight in the all-female Invicta FC. Santos was not interested in the idea whatsoever.
Many had high hopes of a superfight between Santos and bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey. However, Santos fights at featherweight (a division the UFC does not currently have) and "Cyborg" absolutely refused to lose just five extra pounds to fight Rousey in a catchweight bout.
White elaborated further on how Santos' lack of cooperation towards making the much anticipated fight happen influenced her release:
“I’m telling you right now, she wants nothing to do with this fight with Ronda. This is the biggest show in the world. We’re 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 (pounds), it’s just the goofiest thing. I’ve never seen anything like it in the fight business. Okay, so you don’t want to make 135, but you want to talk about fighting Ronda. "
Though Santos is most definitely one of the best pound-for-pound female fighters on the planet, the UFC seems more than content with their growing bantamweight roster. As long as Ronda Rousey has plenty of competition for the time being, Santos' presence is not a vital factor in the evolution of the UFC's only women's division.
But we can be sure that the UFC is wary that once the creation of a 145 lb. women's division is in the works, the division will not gain legitimacy if "Cyborg" is not involved.