UFC featherweight champion Cris Cyborg was hoping to defend her title opposite Amanda Nunes at UFC 228 this September 8. Unfortunately for Cyborg, Nunes is hoping the fight will occur at UFC 232 on December 29.
Speaking on Ariel Helwani’s MMA Show this week, Nunes explained why she’d prefer that this fight occur later on in the year.
“We need some time to promote this fight,” Nunes said (via ESPN).
Of course, it’s not just about adequate time to promote the fight for Nunes. She’s also dealing with a nagging foot injury, and is still not able to kick properly. She needs a bit more time to rehab her foot.
“I still can’t kick very well. I still can’t run very well,” Nunes told Helwani. “I’m better, but I still need time for therapy.”
While these reasons are absolutely legit, Cyborg is still disappointed. She has not fought since March, when she mauled Yana Kunitskaya to a first-round TKO, and is no more than ready to get back in there.
“That’s six months away. I’m ready now,” Justino said on the same episode of Ariel Helwani’s MMA Show. “She was calling me out in January. It’s a long time. You cannot call out somebody — ‘I want to fight you’ — and make them wait one year until you’re ready.”
“I don’t get paid for waiting,” Cyborg added. “I get paid to fight.”
As it turns out, Cyborg is so frustrated with her prolonged periods of inactivity in the UFC that she’s considering leaving the promotion after her fight with Nunes.
“Why are you going to punish me and make me wait one year in my prime?” she said. “If they make me wait until December to fight Amanda, probably it is going to be my last fight in the UFC.”
The good news, of course, is that Cyborg has plenty of options outside the UFC.
Do you think it’s fair of Amanda Nunes to wait until December to fight Cyborg?
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 7/17/2018.