For 28-year-old mixed martial artist Kayla Harrison (3-0), the conclusion of UFC 232’s co-main event brought forth a rollercoaster of emotions.
Harrison, a two-time Olympic gold medalist in judo, has made quite a name for herself in 2018. In her first year of fighting professionally, she has started her career undefeated at 3-0. All of her victories have come by way of finish. However, her goal has always been to fight and defeat the once-invincible knockout artist known as Cris Cyborg.
Unfortunately, her American Top Team (ATT) teammate Amanda Nunes beat her to the punch. With Cyborg’s UFC deal expiring in March, Harrison hopes the Brazilian can ink a deal with the Professional Fighters League (PFL), where she herself currently competes. Despite the dream match losing a bit of its shine, Harrison told ESPN she’s still down to fight Cyborg:
“I still think it would be awesome to fight her. One loss in 10 years doesn’t make her a dud. She’s still a complete wrecking machine. That was the greatest women’s fight of all time, and it kind of pisses me off it was overshadowed by so much stupidity and drama last week.
“I think the only thing that makes sense for her right now is a rematch with Amanda, but of course I would still fight her. No matter what, I would fight her.”
The Future Is Bright
While it’s unfortunate Harrison didn’t get her opportunity to become the first to defeat Cyborg since 2005, it’s hard to not be happy for Nunes. “The Lioness” made history at UFC 232 with her victory. She became the first-ever female dual-weight champion in the history of the promotion. Not to mention, she did it by knocking out the most dominant female fighter of all-time in under a minute.
With a young and dominant champion in Nunes leading the way, and impressive prospects like Harrison on the rise, the future of women’s MMA is looking very bright.