Cris ‘Cyborg’ Justino has not lost since her first fight a dozen years ago. By contrast, Holly Holm is 0-3 her last three. And UFC featherweight champion Germaine de Randamie is 7-3. Cyborg was recently granted a retroactive Therapeutic Use Exemption for a drug that was flagged on an anti-doping test and will be ready to fight soon.
GDR and Holm fought at UFC 208 for the inaugural women’s featherweight championship in the most unlikely title fight in league history. Holm was on a two-fight losing streak one division down, and de Randamie was outside the top 10, one division down. The bout ended with a controversial Unanimous Decision for de Randamie.
Immediately post fight, GDR was asked about fighting Cyborg, and responded by citing the need for hand surgery first. Holly Holm wants a rematch, and is contesting the decision. De Randamie is now confronted with a choice – fight a woman she just beat, or fight Cris Cyborg.
During a recent appearance on Ariel Helwani’s The MMA Hour, GDR made her choice clear when it comes to fighting Cyborg immediately.
“I completely understand people want to see that fight, and that fight will eventually happen, but first I got to fight Holly to clear everything up,” said de Randamie, as transcribed by Adam Guillen Jr. for MMA Mania. “Everything that has been said, I think she deserves the rematch, first. A few weeks ago, it wasn’t clear if Cyborg would be cleared to fight soon, now that she’s cleared, if the fight is going to happen, it will happen anyway, but Holly deserves it first to settle things up.”
“I knew Cyborg was there and there is no reason for me to run, everyone is beatable and it is an honor for me to fight such a great champion like Cyborg. I am not running. But at this point, I do believe Holly deserves the rematch.”
“I’ve said I need surgery on my hand, that’s inevitable. But I never said I need surgery right now. Am I going to have permanent damage if I fight again? That is something I have to evaluate with my doctor. I truly apologize for not making that clear, but I don’t run away from anybody.”
UFC president Dana White was underwhelmed with the UFC 208 main event, so a repeat is unlikely. In all likelihood, GDR vs. Justino is next, after hand surgery.