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Strikeforce Women’s Middleweight Champ Cris Cyborg in Contract Limbo

(“Don’t move, Gina. This is how we’ll get mainstream acceptance.”)

Strikeforce hasn’t announced when  Cristiane “Cyborg” Santos will next defend her belt, and according to the dominant women’s middleweight champion, it’s not because she isn’t ready. It’s because she doesn’t have a contract.

Cyborg told Tatame recently that her contract ran out after her last fight with Jan Finney last June and she hasn’t spoken with Scott Coker and company about re-signing with the recently Zuffa-acquired promotion in the nine months since the bout.

“Currently I don’t have a contract signed, but on my former contract there was something saying that for a year I’m connected to the [promotion] but we might sign a new one.  I believe the fact that the UFC bought Strikeforce is a good thing for women, because we have two years to do a good job and prove them our value —  to prove it to Dana White,” she explains. “I’m not anxious and I’m not worried. I’m happy and I keep on training.”

Cyborg’s agent, Ken Pavia, says that the “one-year term” Santos is referring to is a standard champions clause Strikeforce adds to its contracts to ensure its belt holders don’t fly the coop after winning a title. Former Strikeforce middleweight  champion Jake Shields had a similar proviso on his expired deal with the San Jose organization, but was granted his full release by the promotion when the two sides realized they were unlikely to come to terms and that that Shields was willing to sit out the negotiation period so he could move on the the UFC. Although he says that there haven’t been any discussions about Santos’ future with the promotion, Pavia tells us that he’s confident that Cyborg will come to terms with Strikeforce in the coming weeks.

Cyborg isn’t the first female Strikeforce champion to have a contract expire. Former welterweight champ Sarah Kaufmann revealed prior to her July 2010 fight with Roxanne Modafferi that her contract expired after her win over Takayo Hashi five months earlier. Strikeforce director of communications, Mike Afromowitz told that by winning the title against Hashi, Kaufman was essentially locked into a deal via her contract’s champions clause.

Though she says she is letting Pavia and his MMAAgents team handle her contract negotiations, Santos points out that the key to securing a home for women’s MMA if and when Strikeforce’s anticipated merger with the UFC happens after its broadcasting deal with Showtime and current batch of fighter contracts expire in around  2013, will be to keep on putting on exciting fights, something she’s never had a problem doing.

“I believe we have to put on good shows. We need more women to come and fight. Our market is small when compared to men, but I believe we’ve been proving ourselves to be good at [fighting]. Lately Strikeforce has been supporting female MMA a lot,” Cyborg says. “My fight with Gina [Carano] was a good one, and there are lots of other good female fighters in MMA.

She also points to her former foe and ally, Carano as being a person who will play an important role in ensuring WMMA’s longevity.

“I believe it’s pretty important [for Gina to come back to the sport] because she’s always been there and people got to know it better because of her. There are many fans that enjoy watching her fighting and I believe that, for us to grow on the sport, we can’t think only about ourselves,” Santos says. “We have take one for the team. I cheer for her and for all women on the sport. I think we must get together and make the sport grow.”


  1. Uppercut Magnet Says:

    Mon, 03/28/11 - 04:00

    "Now we'll be together forever"
  2. scumbag Says:

    Mon, 03/28/11 - 04:00

    I love that pic is that vagina c. I will bring it up now to rub it in. Check your comment history folks I told all you fools who put the pussy on the pedestal back when they made vagina (and everyone else to play it off and make it seem legit)strip at her weigh in. I knew she would never fight again any time soon. Vagina was like the one other chick at the dungeons and dragons party. Of course she is going to seem hot compared to Cyborg. Poor fighter. Worse gladiator. Rotten actress.
  3. Uppercut Magnet Says:

    Mon, 03/28/11 - 04:01

    @scumbag are you having a stroke? I don't understand what you're trying to say.
  4. RwilsonR Says:

    Mon, 03/28/11 - 04:04

    I have to say I have never really thought much of women's MMA, and I have never thought of Cyborg as much of a woman, but (s)he comes across very well in this interview. No complaints. Just intelligently says they have to prove themselves, and she sets about ways to do that, even complimenting a rival to do so. I'll probably never like women's MMA, but I appreciate this kind of coherent response from a fighter.
  5. scumbag Says:

    Mon, 03/28/11 - 04:13

    @ upper cut. Why are you so topical and sterotypical. Me rikey rice? are you having a stroke? How predictable! Are you next going to say I don't shut up I throw up and when I look at you I throw up.
  6. scumbag Says:

    Mon, 03/28/11 - 04:16

    *grow up
  7. Uppercut Magnet Says:

    Mon, 03/28/11 - 04:26

    @scumbag i pray for you, my child
  8. scumbag Says:

    Mon, 03/28/11 - 04:30

    Ok upper you lose. You proved my point with yet another played out saying that has been said a thousand times before. We are obviously on differing planes so head on back to originality school and hit me up when you graduate.
  9. Uppercut Magnet Says:

    Mon, 03/28/11 - 04:46

    @scumbag You can't handle the truth because stone cold said so.
  10. scumbag Says:

    Mon, 03/28/11 - 04:49

    @ upper Now with all the irony involved your comments are getting funny. I chuckled at that last one.
  11. ReX13 Says:

    Mon, 03/28/11 - 05:33

    +1 to you both. if you can dig that.
  12. ReX13 Says:

    Mon, 03/28/11 - 05:33

  13. intercept440 Says:

    Mon, 03/28/11 - 06:16

    dont have much thoughts about womans MMA. But it would be more entertaining if the winner got to fuck the loser... plus that falls right into cyborgs realm, all she has to do is beat the shit out of some random mma chick then pull out her cock an fuckem, the crowd goes wild.... it would be like thunderdome... 2 cunts enter (one with a cock i.e. cyborg) one gets fucked lol hell they could even dress it up as a post apocalyptic mad max spin off.... hell ide watch it
  14. intercept440 Says:

    Mon, 03/28/11 - 06:19

    i bet we could totally get chandella to play aunty em.. maybe even masterblaster LMFAO

    Mon, 03/28/11 - 06:56

    They should make them win by forced entry into their vaginal openings. The winner obviously has the stronger kegels. Hey I'm just trying to make it entertaining.
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  18. Susan B. Sandwiches Says:

    Mon, 03/28/11 - 10:40

    I remember after the Carano fight the look of pure joy on Cyborgs face and the sincerity of the whole moment really made me a fan of hers. Also when did people start to do Charlie sheen impressions on this site?
  19. Mofo Says:

    Mon, 03/28/11 - 10:46

    Holy shit. I just got stupider by reading this comments. WHERE THE FUCK AM I? Is this cagepotato? Who the fuck are you people? Rex help me out man! Anyway, what I was gonna write before I read these bizarro world comments - complete with FUCKING SPAM TRACKBACKS THANK YOU VERY MUCH FOR YOUR SWITCH TO WORDPRESS - "“I’m not anxious and I’m not worried. I’m happy and I keep on training.”" Oh. Poor Cyborg. That's the most depressing thing I've ever heard. This is like reading Flowers For Algernon. Tho, after reading this comments page, I doubt anyone reading my comment has any idea what I'm talking about. Oh that fancy 5th grade reading level of mine.
  20. Uppercut Magnet Says:

    Mon, 03/28/11 - 10:51

    "Poo poo platter on you"
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  22. Gorgzilla Says:

    Tue, 03/29/11 - 02:33

    Quote Scumbag: "@ upper cut. Why are you so topical and sterotypical. Me rikey rice? are you having a stroke? How predictable! Are you next going to say I don’t shut up I throw up and when I look at you I throw up." Because putting "va" infront of Gina has NEVER been done before.
  23. uzithrasha Says:

    Tue, 03/29/11 - 04:51

    i can live without womens mma
  24. Chromium Says:

    Tue, 03/29/11 - 05:28

    I'd love it if the UFC kept women's MMA around, there are some really entertaining fighters, even if the depth still has a long way to go. It also makes sense to keep a monopoly on top female talent, to keep any upstart promotion looking to challenge the UFC from having access to that.
  25. Chromium Says:

    Tue, 03/29/11 - 05:29

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  27. Christiane ‘Cyborg’ Santos Awaits Strikeforce Contract | MMA:30 | UFC Fighters | News | Ring Girls | Interviews Says:

    Tue, 03/29/11 - 07:32

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  28. andersonsyourmom Says:

    Tue, 03/29/11 - 10:29

    the ladys throw down everytime. hope they get to stick around.
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  34. hey rich elite needs to sign cris cyborg for their first event... - Page 2 - Sherdog Mixed Martial Arts Forums Says:

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  35. UberKnee | Blog | Strikeforce Women’s Middleweight Champ Cris ‘Cyborg’ is Officially a Free Agent and Is Close to Coming to Terms With a New Promotion Says:

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