The UFC has more than a couple superfights that never came together for one reason or another. Anderson Silva vs. Georges St-Pierre. Randy Couture vs. Fedor Emelianenko. And now that Ronda Rousey has left mixed martial arts for good, we can add Rousey vs. Cyborg to the list.
Cris Cyborg had already established herself at the top of women’s mixed martial arts when Ronda the Olympic medalist came along and quickly became a star. Dana White once said women would never fight in the UFC, but after Ronda Rousey appeared his attitude quickly changed. When the UFC bought and absorbed Strikeforce, they upgraded Rousey’s women’s bantamweight belt into a UFC belt. As for Cris Cyborg? She spent the next few years competing for feeder league Invicta because the UFC wasn’t interested in a women’s featherweight division.
That 10 pound weight difference between the two was the often-repeated reason why Rousey refused to fight Cyborg. Cyborg went so far as to cut down to 140 pounds twice (damaging her endocrine in the process) in the hopes of landing a catchweight fight with Ronda. Still, it never happened. So it’s no surprise that Cyborg was pulling no punches when asked why things never worked out.
When asked if she thought Ronda was afraid of her, Cyborg simply replied “Yes.”