Amanda Nunes and UFC President Dana White are in agreement: Cristiane Justino should be next for the reigning bantamweight queen.
Earlier this week, White told Yahoo! Sports that “Cyborg” vs. Nunes for the featherweight title was “the fight to make.”
“First of all, Amanda Nunes wants to fight her,” White said in an interview with Yahoo Sports. “Amanda Nunes wants to fight Cyborg. That is the fight to make and that is the fight I will make. That’s the fight. Amanda Nunes is a big, strong, powerful puncher. I think she matches up very well with Cyborg too and I think that’s a fun fight and that’s the fight to make.”
After previously expressing some reluctance regarding a fight with Justino before she became featherweight champion, Nunes confirmed that interest via Twitter.
“First of all, I have nothing personal against [Cris Cyborg],” Nunes wrote. “I do believe it is the fight that everyone wants to see and a fight where we can both leave our marks on this sport.”
First of all, I have nothing personal against @criscyborg I do believe it is the fight that everyone wants to see and a fight where we can both leave our marks on this sport.— Amanda Nunes (@Amanda_Leoa) January 6, 2018
Justino appears to have other interests, however. The 34-year-old Brazilian announced that she accepted a fight against Megan Anderson at UFC 221, and while that doesn’t appear to be likely, “Cyborg” would still prefer to fight a true featherweight contender next.
“Having re-established myself as the WORLD CHAMPION at [145 pounds] I feel it is my obligation to fight the No. 1 contender at [145 pounds] in my next fight,” Justino wrote on her website.
“I have fought [four] consecutive fights against girls who have come up from [135 pounds] to fight me, because they were ‘SUPERFIGHTS’ for the fans. Besides Lina Lansberg (I fought her at 140) none of these girls had been fighting at featherweight.”
Cyborg added that in order for Nunes to receive a featherweight title should, she should first earn a win at 145 pounds first.
If Megan Anderson is not ready to fight, then the next available contender Pam Sorenson deserves the opportunity,” she wrote. “I can continue giving fans superfights, however in order for this division to grow it is my responsibility to respect the work of all the women fighting at [145 pounds] and give the top girls a chance at the title once they have earned it. If Amanda Nunes truly wants an opportunity at the [145-pound] belt, a win against any ranked contender in that division would help establish her back in a weight class she left before fighting me.”