It wasn’t too far back that current UFC women’s Bantamweight champion, Amanda Nunes, was shooting for her chance to get the winner of the first-ever women’s Featherweight title fight between Germaine de Randamie and Holly Holm. “Iron Lady,” de Randamie came out the victor at UFC 208.
However, Cris Cyborg is now back in the title picture after being cleared of any wrongdoing by the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA), and Nunes has decided not to pursue a title fight in the 145-pound division.
Accofding to “Lioness,” the division belongs to Cyborg.
“I do not intend to fight with Cris”, Nunes told AG Fight in Brazil (via FOX Sports).
“But my intention was to fight [Holly Holm or Germaine de Randamie]. They were in my category. But Cris is coming back now and I’m not interested in going up. I want to see her as the champion. To fight with her, I would have to gain weight and gain muscle. I am at 135 pounds. To do such a job (at 145), I would need at least a year.”
Before everyone perceived Nunes’ sudden disinterest in winning the title as just simply ducking Cyborg, she elaborated further:
“That’s what I said: ‘This category is for Cris, but then she tested positive’,” Nunes said. “But then, two girls from the 135-pound class moved up. One was coming off two defeats and the other was not in the rankings. The champion [Germaine de Randamie] is a girl that I have already defeated. I asked to go up because I can be champion in two categories. My point of view was that they were two athletes from my category. Cris was not in the game at the time,” she concluded.
It probably doesn’t matter in the grand scheme of things, as UFC President Dana White “pumped the brakes” on Amanda’s quest to move up to featherweight long before “Lioness” had a change of heart.
As for what is next for Nunes, a rematch against Valentina Shevchenko — whom she defeated at UFC 196 back in 2016 — is on the horizon after “Bullet” finished Julianna Pena UFC on FOX 23. Cyborg, meanwhile, is currently waiting to see if de Randamie’s hand is healed before she can get a definite date for her first-ever UFC championship bout.