Former UFC featherweight champion Cris Cyborg has ended her free agency and officially signed with Bellator MMA.
Bellator president Scott Coker made the announcement on Tuesday claiming that Cyborg had signed the ‘biggest contract in women’s MMA history’.
“I have worked with countless athletes over my thirty-plus years of promoting combat sports, but there is no one quite like Cyborg,” Coker said in a statement.
“Her ability to excite the crowd from the moment she makes her walk to the cage is special, and having had the pleasure of promoting several of her fights in the past, I am looking forward to the opportunity of promoting her once again.
Welcome to the family. pic.twitter.com/BQM29cCUP3
— Scott Coker (@ScottCoker) September 3, 2019
“Cyborg is the most dominant female fighter in the history of the sport and she will be a perfect fit here at Bellator, where champion Julia Budd and the other women that make up the best female featherweight division in the world have eagerly awaited her arrival.”
Following the announcement, Cyborg released a video confirming the news that she had officially left the UFC for their lead rivals.
“I’m very excited to announce that I’m partnering with Scott Coker and Viacom and fighting in Bellator,” Cyborg said.
“You guys know I have a lot of girls I want to fight at 145 pounds and this means you’re going to have a lot of fights per year and I’m very happy about that!
“My goal is to be the only female fighter is holding four different major titles in the same division.”
The news brings to end the Brazillian’s tumultuous run within the UFC that has seen her clash repeatedly with Dana White. She fought in the organisation as recently as July when she defeated Felicia Spencer.
Cyborg entered the promotion under a wave of hype having secured world titles in two other organisations (Invicta FC and Strikeforce). She captured the women’s featherweight title in her third fight after a third-round TKO victory over Tonya Evinger.
She defended her title twice before suffering a shock 51-second knockout loss to Amanda Nunes in 2018.
The Brazilian is now set to team up with Coker again with whom she previously worked when she was world champion at Strikeforce, a now-defunct organisation that Coker managed.
It is expected her first fight in Bellator will be a featherweight title fight with the current champion Julia Budd.