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UFC Must Make Ronda Rousey vs. Cyborg

It took a combined 60 seconds for Ronda Rousey and Cris Cyborg Justino to dominate their opponents this past weekend. The time for joking is over, it’s time for Rousey to either fight or face the consequences that come with avoiding her most devastating opponent.

[adinserter block=”1″]UFC president Dana White gets credit for a lot of things but his biggest failure as promoter has been his inability to deliver big super fights. Promises are often made, yet fights are never delivered. White can turn this all around by pulling off the biggest fight in WMMA history. How he continues to let this one slip past his fingers is just simply mind boggling.

The UFC is faced with an unenviable dilemma. Does the organization sacrifice an entire division for one super fight? Those are the stakes of booking Ronda Rousey vs. Cris “Cyborg” Justino. The fight is arguably the biggest fight the promotion could pull off at this time yet the ramifications of a Rousey massacre could be devastating. Without Rousey there is no WMMA. While that may be a harsh statement to make it is a fact. Nobody else, including Cyborg is pulling the kind of mainstream attention that Rousey is. Knowing that the odds of Rousey winning a fight against Cyborg as the same as Rousey losing, this has become one tough fight for the UFC to make.

Many will give the UFC credit. Many will say that the UFC has been attempting to make this fight since Rousey debuted in 2013. That may be true but there is a catch. The UFC has been attempting to make this fight at 135. See, Cyborg fights at 145 and walks around much heavier. Rousey moved down in weight in 2011 to 135. White and Rousey have said repeatedly that they’d take the fight at 135, giving Rousey a distinct advantage. Yet Rousey has been adamant that she will not fight a pound heavier, when challenged to a catch weight fight of 140 pounds and yet she continues to use this 135 shield to avoid criticism from her promoter and MMA journalists.

Justino is not well liked and this has worked against her when it comes to critics. Many speculated that Justino was on performance enhancing drugs for years as an MMA fighter. Nobody ever gave Justino the full respect she probably deserved over this speculation. Justino has tested once for PEDs, back in 2011. Yes she has tested once in her 10-year WMMA career for PEDs and yet she has had to bare this cross before and after then. Rousey would have pressure to fight anyone else in this situation but Justino will never get that kind of support. Justino has fought three times since and has passed all PED tests.

After demolishing Cat Zingano in 14 seconds, Rousey is now being compared to Mike Tyson. I couldn’t think of a better analogy. I watched Tyson fight seemingly every three months as a kid. He was an animal! Yet even I remember back then many of Tyson’s critics pointing out that he was avoiding top-caliber opponents. Once Tyson got in the ring with guys like Holyfield and Lewis, his aura disappeared. Rousey, like Tyson is avoiding her toughest potential challenge. Her legacy will not be cemented until she climbs that mountain.

“She’s not in the UFC. If she wants to come to the UFC and fight at 135, then yes, I would,” Rousey told Ariel Helwani after winning at UFC 184. “(She won) against some chick that I beat on like my second pro-fight ever, in what, 40 seconds? Not really (impressed).”

Rousey’s not impressed? This comes from the same Rousey who stood inside the octagon on Saturday night issuing challenges to Bethe Correia and Holly Holm. With all due respect to both women, each are big mismatches next to Rousey. Yet Rousey shows no interest in fighting her rival who just obliterated her opponent in under a minute on Friday night. How anyone can take this seriously is beyond me?

[adinserter block=”2″]Dana White has pressed many former champions to take super fights in the past. White however has no problem with Rousey’s 135 pound demand. It was okay to pressure GSP, Anderson Silva, Jon Jones and others to take super fights with catchweights for years. I can’t understand how he can defend this with a straight face.

Rousey likes to carry the banner for WMMA. The biggest thing she could do for WMMA is fight Cyborg. That fight would be the biggest WMMA fight in history and could potentially break one million buys. The media attention for a fight of that magnitude would be enormous for WMMA. Yet she is perfectly content letting Justino fight in Invicta while she challenges subpar competition and WMMA continues to struggle. That’s just the facts whether you like Rousey, hate Justino, or just don’t care.

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22 COMMENTS

  1. Bla Bla Bla…..RR is way more rounded of a fighter than Cyborg. She would beat cyborg in 90 seconds. Cyborg recently lost to a mid level fighter. She just wants a big payday. Holly Holm was a boxing champion and she didn’t just walk in for a title fight. She is having to prove herself. Cyborg first needs to join the UFC. Then she should have to work her way to the top like everyone else. Needs to prove she is clean and can make 135. Simple unless your a roid rager. The fight will happen someday and then we wont have to hear from all you RR haters anymore.

  2. The afore mentioned fight does NOT have to happen! Cryborg is not what the public sees as a “Worthy Opponent”. Knowing the UFC, though, they will let her whine her way into the fight. I will not have any interest in it whatsoever.

  3. Ronda Rousey is one of the most inspirational athletes of our times; talented, dedicated, thoughtful and honest. She stands for something. She is the champ. Cyborg isn’t the champ, or the role model. … Why should a champ bulk up to a PED user’s weight to accommodate a cheater’s ambition? Yes, this fight should happen. And it should happen on the champ’s terms, not the challenging cheater’s. Love you Ronda, stay the course!

  4. who cares really. rousey is a woman fighting other woman – it is nowhere near the best MMA or UFC has to offer. that, of course, would be the men.

      • How is Cyborg hiding?? She’s been wanting the fight. It would be very easy for Rousey to fight a 145, as she used to. She wouldn’t have to cut much weight from her walk around. Cyborg even offered a catch weight of 140, which would be split RIGHT DOWN THE MIDDLE! It would be perfectly split, no advantage for either…..but yet Rousey still hides under that 135…….but yeah, it’s Cyborg running, right? Wow…

        • So, by your train of thought, RR should fight up as much as it takes??? Your theory that there is no advantage a 140 is flawed. You are asking RR to fight up 5 lbs and for cyborg not to have to lose that 5 lbs. Huge advantage for the bigger fighter. Keep in mind – if you follow your idea – that day of the fight cyborg would have more like a 15 lb weight advantage. The title is at 135. EOD.
          Further, you claim that RR is hiding. Not sure how she is hiding when she has publicly asked for this fight. All cyborg has to do is make weight (and stay clean). RR cannot hide if cyborg make weight.
          The only person I see hiding is cyborg. She refuses to do what it takes to make weight. That is pretty clear to most.

          • Yeah David, I agree with you.
            Also, Cyborg would come in to a catch weight @ 160 pounds. She walks around at 175.
            She (Cyborg) will never come into a 135 pound weigh in at less than 144#.
            She has ALWAYS been a cheater and cannot change.

  5. Rousey is running scared. She is enjoying all the media and sponsorship attention that she is getting. Also, Dana White does not want this to happen. Rousey losing could hurt the company in sponsorship money. Rousey is not a true champion. Atrue champion accepts ALL fights from anyone and yes, even if it means gaining 1POUND TO DO IT. Rousey does not want to fight Cyborg because her financial advisor told her that it would not be good for business should she lose. Asfar as Cyborg and PEDS are concerned, if you think that you can take any enhancement drug and poof, you become champion, then you are wrong. You still have to have talent and put the hours in the gym.

    • Based on your rationale, there are a ton of current and former UFC champs that aren’t TRUE champions because they didn’t move up in weight. Hilarious.

      And I honestly can’t believe anyone tries to minimize the impact of a drug like Stanozolol in a combat sport. In my opinion it should be a crime to take a performance enhancing drug and then enter a cage to try to cause bodily injury. You’re not only plainly and without question cheating, but you’re also increasing your ability to damage your opponent. And the simple question that can’t be ignored is, if the PEDs don’t make a difference, then why take them.

      Lastly, I can’t help but laugh at the whole “not good for UFC business” nonsense. Honestly, the UFC has a long history of throwing their cash cows into very difficult fights. Brock Lesnar could have filled arenas and fought bottom tier guys but the UFC threw him in with Carwin, Mir, Velasquez and Couture in a 2-year window. Same with GSP. The guy was the biggest draw in the UFC and he continually faced the absolute top guys at 170.
      The UFC makes all the great fights happen. They just don’t arbitrarily force their champions to move up to fight in other weight classes.

      • Vernon, you are a friggin’ genius!
        You are well read and studied about all things Ronda Rousey.
        You know that Cyborg stands NO CHANCE against Ronda Rousey at ANY weight.
        Having said that, Ronda is the CHAMP.
        Cyborg will not make weight and simply pay (forfeit) the fine that is assessed for an overweight fighter.
        Ronda will still kick her ass.
        Mike Tyson admits Ronda Rousey Might Kick HIS ass so where does that leave Cyborg?
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fKoDgxqUTJ0

  6. I love how the author, in the first two sentences, puts making this fight on RR. What??? How about that if Cyborg does not make the fight happen, then she faces the consequences?

    • Of course it is up to Cyborg to make weight. However, it is up to Rousey to agree to move up a mere five pounds to sign the fight. At that point it is all on Cyborg to make weight.

      • Still waiting on a reason why the most popular fighter in MMA needs to move up a single pound to fight a disgraced, known PED user like Cyborg?

        Cyborg has spent a chemically enhanced career with an unnatural size advantage over her opponents. It is 100% on her to get off the juice, get down to 135, and EARN a title shot against Rousey.

        Is the legacy of GSP diminished for not moving up to fight Silva or Silva for not fighting Jon Jones? Absolutely not. Each staked their claim as the best at their weight and a spot on almost every P4P ranking. Ronda has done the same thing.

        Meanwhile Cyborg used Stanozolol to cut down to 145 pound and unfairly beat smaller opponents. And now she wants to be rewarded for that behavior by getting a fight at a catch-weight against Rousey? Yeah, that sounds fair.

      • Sorry but the hypocrisy of what you posted alludes me (not trying to start anything with you).
        1) If Cyborg “makes weight” then there is no need for RR to concede anything.
        2) The fact that you then say RR needs to make a concession directly implies that RR has to be the one to make the fight happen.
        The bottom line is this: The current title is at 135 lbs. There is no 140 lb division. RR is the champion. It is up to Cyborg to do 2 things: make weight and stay clean.
        RR conceding 5 lbs (on the day of the weight only) to a fighter that is walking around at 175+ lbs gives a HUGE advantage to Cyborg. Sorry, I just don’t get how that is on RR at all.

  7. Explain to me why the most popular female fighter in the world, who absolutely owns the 135 pound division, should move up even 1 pound to meet a fighter that has now been exposed as a PED cheat?
    Where there’s smoke there’s fire. The speculation surrounding Cyborg’s unnatural and manly physique was the smoke and her positive drug test was clearly the fire. PED cheaters don’t only cheat when they get caught. They also cheat and DON’T get caught. Only someone buried with their head in the sand would think a fighter was only using PEDs the one time they got caught.

    As a huge MMA fan, I have absolutely no burning desire to see Rousey move up in weight and give an advantage to a fighter that can’t move down in weight due to steroids. Rousey doesn’t need a fight with Cyborg. She is already as big a draw as the UFC has on their roster. Her amazingly quick win over Zingano was front page headline material. Meanwhile Cris Santos is languishing in a 2nd tier promotion fighting opponents that Rousey demolished in her 2nd pro fight. Her win barely got noticed. And nobody cares that a cheater won another fight.

    Also, just as fact check because it’s clearly needed, Mike Tyson’s aura disappeared when he was knocked out by Buster Douglas. Like Rousey, Tyson faced every name in the HW division during his undefeated rampage. Lewis and Holyfield weren’t even blips on the HW radar during that timeframe. Ridiculous.

    • Are you high? Tyson didn’t face a laundry list of high-quality opponents in the HW division…Foreman, Bowe, Moorer, and yes, Holyfield. Tyson was dodging Holyfield before he was even sent to prison years before the fight finally took place. Tyson didn’t want to fight tough opponents…just like your butt buddy, loser Rousey.

    • It’s up to Rousey to make the fight happen, because she has been talking trash for years. If you call someone out, then it is up to you to make the fight happen. Simple as that.

      Also, have you ever wondered why “the most popular female fighter in the world” keeps calling out a “PED cheater”? Why is the great Ronda Rousey even taking the time to talk about this steroid cheat? Well, Cyborg has been the best female MMA fighter in the world long before Dana White was even interested in women’s MMA and a few wins by Rousey against easy opponents does not change that. And as far as the weight goes, Ronda knows that she does not have a realistic chance of winning if the fight happens at 145, so she’s demanding to do it at 135 so that she has a better chance of winning.

      • @ go – How can RR “make” the fight happen if cyborg will not make weight?
        RR has thrown down the challenge. The only person preventing this fight from happening is cyborg.
        BTW – The title is at 135……..There is no 145 lb weight class. Therefore, any 145 talk does not make any sense.

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