Katie Taylor won’t be too eager to agree to Scott Coker’s suggestion for her touted crossover clash with Cristiane ‘Cyborg’ Justino.
Katie Taylor’s promoter Eddie Hearn has repeatedly hinted that former UFC featherweight champion ‘Cyborg’ was one of the names on a shortlist of opponents for Taylor as she aims to close out her career with the biggest fights.
Most presumed that ‘Cyborg’, who now competes under the Bellator banner, would switch to boxing for the one-off bout with Taylor but Bellator president Scott Coker would prefer to level the playing field.
Referencing Conor McGregor’s defeat to Floyd Mayweather in his boxing debut three years ago, Coker hinted that he’d prefer to set up both a boxing match and a rematch under MMA rules for Taylor and ‘Cyborg.’
Coker said: “To me, the caveat is going to be this, and this might be a deal breaker on some level, but part of me feels like this: When I saw the McGregor fight against Mayweather, I felt like McGregor is not a boxer, he’s an MMA fighter. Does he do boxing? Yes. But is he at the level of Mayweather? No, so for me that fight worked out the way it did but Mayweather should’ve fought Conor in MMA as part of the reciprocation.”
There’s little to no chance that Taylor would agree to compete in an MMA fight at this stage of her career and ‘Cyborg’ seems to have no issue with fighting strictly under boxing rules.
Coker intends to continue talking to Hearn about the ruleset for the crossover bout, with significant negotiations yet to be done before a deal gets over the line.
“We’ll have to work it out and it depends on what Cyborg wants to do,” Coker concluded. “If Eddie Hearn wants to see who’s the best female combat star in capability, then he should think about it.”