Germaine de Randamie’s title reign as the first women’s featherweight championship will certainly go down as one of the most cotroversial in UFC history.
After defeating Holly Holm for the newly-created division at UFC 208 in Brooklyn, “The Iron Lady” made it perfectly clear that she would not fight fellow 145-pounder Cris “Cyborg” Santos, citing the Brazilian’s past and present problems testing positive for performance enhancing drugs.
Being that the UFC essentially created the division for “Cyborg”, de Randamie’s refusal to defend her belt against the clear-cut number one contender forced the UFC’s hand in stripping her of the belt.
De Randamie spoke about being stripped of the belt for the first time via Instagram this week.
“As many of you will know, the UFC has stripped me from the belt,” de Randamie wrote. “For those of us who do not know what that means; The UFC has unpacked my title because I refuse to fight against their number one challenger. (I have my reasons for that). It’s great to hear this news from the media and I’m sorry that it’s running, but it’s what it is!
“Well, I hear you thinking again ‘She’s scared! What a bad champion! A shame for the sport! She did not deserve to be a champion!”, etc, etc. I’ve seen it all over. But apart from what everyone thinks, I’m walking my own path. And there you can agree or not.”
However, de Randamie did say that the incident will affect her career as a fighter.
“That I’m stripped does not mean I’m going to stop,” de Randamie said. The UFC is not long for me! It’s easy to stand with the crowd. It takes courage to stand alone.”
“Cyborg” will instead face up-and-comer Megan Anderson for the vacated belt at UFC 214. Prior to the creation of the women’s featherweight division, “Cyborg” had fought her first two UFC bouts at a catch weight of 140 pounds.