After watching UFC featherweight champion Cris Cyborg maul Yana Kunitskaya at UFC 222 last weekend, Chael Sonnen believes he’s identified some glaring holes in her game. Sonnen broke it down in the latest episode of Beyond the Fight, and implored Cyborg’s potential future opponents to listen.
“As she continues to fight, we continue to see some massive holes in her game,” Sonnen said. “First off, she’s not very good in the clinch. Reality check – she’s a fantastic fighter – she’s not very good in the clinch. Want to disagree with that? Go watch a kickboxer called Holly Holm push her all over that Octagon like a Mack Truck versus a Volvo and then hold her there.”
“She’s not a very good wrestler,” Sonnen continued. “Now, she’s strong, and I can tell you, I’ve dealt with strong guys in wrestling before, but I’ve been a lot better than them. They were able to level the playing field or slow me down or help neutralize… just cause of their strength, so I’m not dismissing that. But you go watch her versus Yana, just [at UFC 222], Yana takes her down with a single [leg takedown]. Go watch 50 UFCs, you’re not going to see anybody taken down with that shot. It’s a terrible shot. It was done terribly. It was done slow as molasses uphill. Cyborg went right down! Yana didn’t know what to do when she was on top. She had passing opportunities, she was too scared, she was burying her head. She didn’t want to get hit, she didn’t want to feel that power. When you’re on top, posture up and go to work like a bully, cause you’re in a bully position. That’s why we say ‘never kick somebody when they’re down’, because they can’t do anything, they’re down. Yana got on top, she did nothing, she was scared to death. She was scared to death after she took that shot. So now we’ve learned two things in Cyborg’s last fights, first she’s not very good in the clinch, and second she’s not a very good wrestler. Girls need to start paying attention to this. They keep matching her up like her father is the matchmaker – let’s just keep on giving her strikers. Well, some of you girls with some wrestling skills? You need to step up.”
“She’s also very vulnerable to get hit. She gets hit a lot, she gets kicked a lot. She deals with them very well, she’s very tough, she’s a very good competitor.”
Chael Sonnen concluded:
“We’ve got someone that can get hit. We’ve got someone that doesn’t know how to handle the clinch. We’ve got somebody that falls down… I don’t even know what to call that [takedown], Daniel Cormier called it a ‘low single,’ but it took him about 10 seconds before he gave it a name, because it doesn’t even have a name. That was garbage, and it worked. Cyborg’s got holes, girls. Go out there and exploit them.”
What do you think of Chael Sonnen’s comments on Cris Cyborg?
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 3/4/2018.