While some believe there is a long-running blood feud between Invicta FC champion Cristiane Justino and UFC champion Ronda Rousey, “Cyborg” insists the relationship isn’t personal: She just wants to give the fans the fight they want to see.
“I don’t have anything personal against her,” Justino told MMAjunkie.com Radio. “She talks stuff about me, and I think all the time she’s talking about me. I don’t know if she loves me, but I don’t have nothing personal. I think everything is professional.”
The rivalry between the two high-level female fighters began years ago when Justino (12-1 MMA) and Rousey (7-0 MMA, 1-0 UFC) were the respective featherweight and bantamweight champions of the now-defunct Strikeforce organization.
There has since been a lot of talk about putting together the potential matchup, but the sticking point has always been what weight class the bout would be contested under.
Rousey has been firm in her stance that since she is the champion of the bigger company, Justino should accommodate her by dropping down to 135 pounds.
Unfortunately, the Brazilian says the additional 10-pound weight cut is not physically plausible.
“I’m very heavy and my bones are heavy and I try to make 135, but I think it’s very difficult for me,” Justino said. “I think 145 is very hard. Always when I make 145 I say, ‘Why?’ It’s very difficult for me to make 145 and I said, ‘If Ronda wants to fight me she can make 140 and go up and I’ll go down five pounds.”
Even when the idea of a catchweight affair has been brought up in the past, Rousey hasn’t appeared interested, as she wants Justino to drop the weight so their fight could be for the UFC championship.
While a title fight would be the ideal situation in terms of promotion, Justino said it shouldn’t determine whether or not the bout takes place because ultimately she just wants to put together what would arguably be the biggest women’s MMA fight ever – belt or no belt.
“I don’t care about the belt in the UFC, I care about the fight,” Justino said. “I think everybody wants to see the fight. I’m the champion of Invicta now. I don’t care. But I think the fans want to watch this fight, and I think it would be very exciting.”
As time goes on, to some fans, it likely feels like the dream fight between Justino and Rousey isn’t meant to be and will never take place.
Justino is testing herself outside of the MMA cage by taking her next fight under muay Thai rules on Friday at Lion Fight 11 in Las Vegas, while Rousey stayed busy coaching “The Ultimate Fighter” reality show opposite Miesha Tate and traveling the world for movie roles.
Even though Justino is eager to make the fight with Rousey happen, she is unwilling to budge on the idea of a 140-pound catchweight battle.
Some may criticize the 28-year-old for refusing to at least attempt to cut the weight, but Justino believes the UFC isn’t being flexible enough on the matter because it fears a champion from another organization will come in and defeat its poster girl.
“I think the UFC tries to protect Ronda because the boss wants everything inside their event, Justino said. “If we’re going to make this fight, why not 140? Everyone says, ‘Oh Jon Jones vs. Anderson Silva and (Georges) St-Pierre vs. somebody else [at a catchweight]. I think we should make this fight at 140.
“I just want to go over there and win the fight then go back to my home at Invicta.”
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