Megan Anderson believes Amanda Nunes’ clinical KO victory over Cristiane Justino -- better known as “Cris Cyborg” -- is a positive sign for the future of the 145-pound division.
The 28-year-old Australian, who is fresh off a controversial TKO victory over Cat Zingano at UFC 232, believes that the featherweight division has had trouble attracting quality fighters due to the dominance of “Cyborg.”
The former Invicta FC featherweight champion is hopeful now after Cyborg’s loss that fewer fighters drop down to the bantamweight division and instead try their hand in the featherweight division to improve on the talent already on show there. Anderson was a guest on The MMA Hour and told host Luke Thomas that she believes Cyborg’s loss to Nunes was a positive sign for the future of the division.
“I think it’s good,” Anderson said. “I think Cris’s -- she was on like a 21-fight win streak or something like that -- I think her invincibility is what made it hard for people to want to stay in this division because she was so dominant and I have believed for a while that if Cris was to lose or if she was to not fight anymore, I feel like the division would flourish.
“I honestly think people are scared to fight her and that’s why they don’t stay in this division,” Anderson added. “And I think with Amanda showing that there are people out there that have potential and that not everyone is invincible, I hope it shows people that they can stay in this division and start building it.”
Anderson said Nunes’ performance got her excited when she watched it backstage after her win against Zingano and believed the key to the fight was for Nunes to earn the respect of “Cyborg” by landing a good shot on her early.
“That was an amazing fight. Holy s---,” Anderson said. “We were all in the green room f---ing yelling and that’s what Amanda needed to do. That was her key to victory. She had to make Cris respect her power and she did that in devastating fashion.”
Despite Anderson’s controversial win over Zingano -- which was deemed a TKO win for the Aussie as she accidentally injured the eye of “Alpha” with her big toe -- the Aussie has offered Zingano a rematch although if that doesn’t happen she would love to be matched up against Nunes or “Cyborg” next.
“I hope that I can get the chance to fight Amanda next. Do I think I will? Probably not,” Anderson said. “I have no idea what’s in store for me next. I would love to fight Amanda. I love that fight. I would love to fight Cris as well. And if people feel like I need to fight Cat again and prove myself then I’ll fight her as well. I have no idea what’s gonna happen next and I think it’s going to make for an interesting 2019.
“I do not have any injuries and I definitely would like to fight in the first quarter of next year and I just really hope that I’ve proven to the UFC that -- and I hope that I can use my platform -- to show them that there are stars being built in this division, that there are people that are marketable, that they can use and build with and fight and put on performances, albeit controversially,” she added. “But I really hope that they start signing some featherweights and that they do really start to invest in this division.”