Fans looking forward to the possibility of UFC bantamweight champion Amanda Nunes fighting featherweight titleholder Cris Cyborg later this year could be headed for disappointment as ‘The Lioness’ appears to be turning her attention away from the blockbuster showdown.
Nunes and Cyborg originally looked set to fight at UFC 226 in July, but instead Cyborg was drafted in as a short notice replacement against Yana Kunitskaya to headline UFC 222 recently, which in turn led to Nunes being booked opposite Raquel Pennington at UFC 224.
The assumption had been that if Nunes emerged victorious then the superfight with Cyborg would be back on, but Nunes has now indcated that she has other plans.
“When I texted Dana White that I wanted the fight, it was because I didn’t have nobody in my division. I didn’t even know if I was gonna fight soon,” Nunes stated on the ‘UFC Unfiltered’ podcast. “I was concerned with waiting years because I’ve been in that position before, waiting so long for a fight, and I don’t want to do it again. I don’t want to stay here waiting, waiting, waiting.
“But now, we have Rocky [Pennington] and we have the Brazilian, Ketlen [Vieira] and I feel like my division is starting to grow. If you pay attention, the division’s gonna be awesome and now I have two. I have Rocky and I have Ketlen. Rocky is my next step and I want to see Ketlen after, for sure.”
That being said, Nunes isn’t ruling out the potential to one day fight Cyborg, but for now there’s too many complications for it to be something that she’s actively seeking at this time.
“There’s gonna be a lot of things involved in that,” Nunes said. “Having the contract for her, for me, it has to make sense for both of us so we can do this. It’s nothing personal against Cyborg. I know she’s Brazilian. She talks about because we’re Brazilian we’re not supposed to fight. When you become a professional fighter, you want to become the best, you want to beat the best.
“It’s nothing personal but I feel like there’s a lot of things involved in that and I don’t want to wait for that. I want to keep fighting, I don’t want to wait to negotiate. Right now my division has a new contender and I’m excited for that. Whatever happens after that, we’ll see.”