It's no secret that one of the few remaining big-ticket fights that Strikeforce can put together—at least at the moment—is a women's title fight between bantamweight champion and rising superstar Ronda Rousey and former featherweight champion Cris Cyborg.
Cyborg, of course, can't fight at the moment. She's currently serving a one-year suspension for testing positive for stanozolol, after thoroughly dismantling poor Hiroko Yamanaka last December. Cyborg was stripped of her title, leaving the Strikeforce female featherweight division on the verge of extinction.
Rousey's rise to the top coincided with Cyborg's fall from grace, but there's still plenty of interest in seeing the two best female fighters in the world collide. Part of that comes from a technical perspective, but mostly it's due to Rousey taking every chance she can get to issue derogatory remarks about Cyborg.
Who wins this fight?
Female fighting at the highest level hasn't really caught on with the public, but Rousey vs. Cyborg is the exception. Rousey's personality, and the fact that she's utterly destroyed every opponent she's faced thus far, has helped turn her into Strikeforce's biggest star. And Cyborg has a wealth of footage of her destroying one opponent after another. It's truly a gold mine.
Cyborg took the time to issue a challenge to Rousey for the 135-pound belt after winning gold at the World Jiu-Jitsu Championships over the weekend.
The main question that remains is this: Can Cyborg actually make 135? She's a massive woman, all rippling muscles and very little body fat. And according to Cyborg herself, she won't be able to make the weight.
Can the fight actually happen? Rousey's mom, Dr. Ann Maria Rousey, says that Rousey might consider a catchweight bout, but she indicated that Rousey shouldn't compromise for someone who was caught doing steroids.
@Jennifer_SwifT I don't know. She *might* consider a mid-point. Really,why should she compromise for someone who got caught cheating?— DrAnnMaria (@DrAnnMaria) June 4, 2012
As a fight fan, I hope we do see Rousey vs. Cyborg down the road, even if it takes place at 140 pounds or another agreed-upon catchweight. They're two of the most compelling characters in the sport, and they're also the best female fighters in the world.
It would be a shame if they're kept apart by weight issues, but I also understand that Rousey has no incentive to move up to featherweight. She's the champion, she's the one who has stayed clean thus far throughout her career and there's no reason for her to risk her marketability by moving to a weight she isn't completely comfortable in against an opponent who might run through her quite easily.