Cris “Cyborg” Justino may currently be competing under the Invicta FC banner, but her contract is with the UFC. They’ve been paying her fight purse on each of the Invicta cards at which she’s competed, and though they don’t currently promote the featherweight division, they may finally be bringing her into the Octagon.
According to a report from Wednesday’s UFC Tonight program on Fox Sports 1, the UFC is looking at potentially booking Justino on their first Brazilian stadium event this May. The UFC 198 event will take place at a 40,000-seat venue in Curitiba, and they want to stack the card as much as possible.
Per the report, they’re considering Cyborg for a fight at either a 140 lb. catchweight or a featherweight matchup, though nothing is yet official. Justino is unbeaten in 17 fights since a loss in her MMA debut, and she’s picked up five wins under the Invicta banner since her debut almost three years ago.
UFC 198 hits pay-per-view on May 14, headlined by the Heavyweight Championship bout between Fabricio Werdum and Stipe Miocic.
Penick’s Analysis: It’s an appropriate spot for the UFC to use Cyborg, and if they’re finally willing to just book her outright with the Ronda Rousey matchup no longer a conversation it’s all for the better. Obviously they’re not going to build a division around her at this stage, but to give her one-off fights against a bantamweight willing to meet her half way, or against any fighter they can find to face her in the Octagon is sensible enough. If they can make money with her on their cards, they should.
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