For the longest time, Ronda Rousey told Cris “Cyborg” Justino that she would not chase her, that if Justino wanted to fight Rousey, she would have to drop to 135 pounds, the weight Rousey fought at as the UFC women’s bantamweight champion. With Rousey no longer the champion, Justino is very interested in revisiting a possible matchup against Rousey.
“I think this fight has to happen,” Justino said on The MMA Hour. “I think Ronda said a lot of things about me, a lot of bad things. A lot of fans forget about, but I never forget about. I would like to fight her in the cage. I think we have a lot of things to talk about in the cage, and not outside the cage. I hope she’s coming back. I want to fight soon. I don’t have time to wait.”
One of those things that Rousey said came during a 2014 interview with Yahoo. “I’ve said before, I don’t care if she’s injecting horse semen into her eyeballs, I’ll fight her, but that’s just my personal decision,” said Rousey, who by then had defended her UFC title three times. “But I can’t make a decision for the whole division. I can’t say it’s the right thing. This girl has been on steroids for so long and [has been] injecting herself for so long that she’s not even a woman anymore. She’s an ‘it.’ It’s not good for the women’s division. It’s not good at all.
“If she comes in the UFC and I beat the [expletive] out of her and then I retire and become an action movie star, then the UFC is still going to be stuck with her. The division could die. She could ruin the whole sport. Even though it’s a fight a lot of people want to see, even if I beat the living crap out of her, it won’t be good for the sport because then she’d still be in the UFC.”
Justino does have one steroid suspension on her record. In 2011 she tested positive for stanozolol metabolites and was subsequently suspended for one year, fined $2,500 and stripped of her Strikeforce women’s featherweight title.
Since then, Justino has fought mostly for Invicta FC, but she competed for the UFC in her last outing, earning an 81-second TKO win over Leslie Smith in May. That fight was contested at a catchweight of 140 pounds.
That catchweight—and the fact that Justino has been drug tested by the United States Anti-Doping Agency, which oversees the UFC’s anti-doping efforts, a total of eight times—opens the door for a possible Rousey–Justino bout.
“I think it would be an amazing fight and all fans would see it,” said Justino. “I think it would be the biggest fight ever. Me and Ronda Rousey. Everybody wanna watch.”
The UFC is unsure if Rousey will return to the octagon, but if she does, it’s hard to deny that a fight between her and Justino would be a huge moneymaker for the fighters and the promotion.