Cris Cyborg signs new UFC extension deal
Just days after the announcement that she would be defending her belt against Holly Holm at UFC 219, Cristine "Cyborg" Justino has stated she's agreed a new multi-fight deal.The featherweight champion has penned a new contract with the UFC ahead of her title defence
What's the story?
The 32-year-old Brazilian was nearing the end of her existing contract and according to reports, this deal has made her the highest-paid female within the company.
In a statement on her website she said, "From this day forward, we are on the same team working together. I am no longer in a position where I am fighting for a division or a chance at a world title. I'm excited to have the full support of WME and the UFC behind me and to see how this will elevate the platform of my brand."
In case you didn't know...
Cyborg is arguably the best and most feared female fighter across the world right now. A woman who possesses both frightening power and devastating hand speed, the experienced Brazilian hasn't lost a professional MMA fight in the last 12 years - stopping her last 18 opponents in dominant fashion.
At present, she currently holds a perfect 3-0 record in the UFC and won the vacant Women's Featherweight championship against Tonya Evinger at UFC 214 in July.
Heart of the Matter
Originally, the UFC had not shown too much interest in Cyborg to begin with. She asked for them to provide a 145-pound weight division, which they didn't pursue, instead making her endure two painful weight cuts to fight at the catch weight of 140 pounds.
Surprising wins for Holly Holm and Rose Namajunas knocked off the dominant champions in both the bantamweight and strawweight divisions, meaning Cyborg is widely seen as the premier female athlete within the organisation.
Having dealt with her issues regarding banned substances, the Curitiba native has come a long way and become one of the most sought-after names on the UFC roster. Some still have their doubts but it's becoming increasingly hard to ignore her ability.
While Cyborg would love to stay active in future, UFC's problem is finding her appropriate opponents. It's rare that you find someone so eager to regularly defend their title with limited possible challengers.
If she comes through unscathed against Holm and delivers a devastating performance, this issue could become an even more pressing one.