Undisputed Bellator MMA featherweight champion, Cris Cyborg is currently negotiating terms with the promotion as per president, Scott Coker, amid links with a return to the UFC to score a title rematch with compatriot, Amanda Nunes, with the long-time Bellator leader confident of retaining the Curitiba veteran on his roster.
Undefeated since her move to the Bellator back in 2020, Cyborg, 37, most recently defeated Arlene Blencoewe in a unanimous decision victory back in Bellator 279 in April of last year in a Hawaii rematch.
Completing her contractual obligations with the organization in her rematch win over the New Zealander, Cris Cyborg, who still remains under the banner of Bellator as per Coker, is expected to return to the promotion later this year, upon the conclusion of negotiations.
Scott Coker confident of signing Cris Cyborg to Bellator MMA contract
Last night in the co-main event of Bellator 293, former UFC bantamweight title challenger, Cat Zingano appeared to stamp her ticket to a featherweight title fight against Cyborg next, taking out Northern Ireland contender, Leah McCourt in a close decision victory.
“I’m not sure what Cat (Zingano) heard [regarding a vacant title fight with Leah McCourt], because I didn’t talk to her directly, but from the company’s standpoint, this was always a three-round [title] elimination fight for the number one contender spot,” Scott Coker told assembled media following Bellator 293. “Cris Cyborg is still the current champion, we still have her under contract right now. We have her under a matching rights provision, we are negotiation with her. And we expect to bring her back at some point this year.”
“Now, it’s going to be a great fight [between Cris Cyborg and Cat Zingano],” Coker explained. “Hopefully we’ll put this together with Cris in the next couple of weeks and her and Cat can work on a big fight for the two of them to fight for Cris’ belt. Somewhere along the line, between my fight team and Ed Soares, and the dialogue, I told them, ‘I don’t know where this got lost,’ but from our perspective, it’s always been a three round [title] elimination fight.”
Linked with a return to the UFC in an attempt to avenge a December 2018 featherweight title loss to fellow Brazilian favorite, Nunes following the completion of her contractual obligations with Bellator last year, Cyborg suffered a first round KO loss to the Bahia native.
In the time since, Cyborg has defeated Julia Budd, Arlene Blencowe (x2), Leslie Smith, and Sinead Kavanagh during her time under the scrutiny of Bellator.