Bellator featherweight champion Cris Cyborg has called out her former boss Dana White and his proposed “fight island.”
In response to the coronavirus pandemic, all Bellator and UFC fights have been postponed. However, that hasn’t stopped the UFC president from doing whatever it takes to resume business. White has even claimed he’ll host several upcoming events on private island. He says it is currently in the works and expects to host live events from the island as soon as next month.
Cyborg, who is the former UFC featherweight champ, thinks White needs to wait like everybody else, instead of thinking he is the exception to the rule.
“Everybody has to be quarantined,” Cyborg said on the No Sports Report podcast. “It’s the rules for everyone. You know a lot of people don’t want to be home, a lot of people are struggling now. I think he personally should do something (other) than just think about himself and boxing and MMA fights. I think it’s better to wait, like everyone else and respect everyone.”
The 34-year old believes the decision to host fights could increase the risk of spreading the coronavirus to family and teammates too.
“Even though the fighters have to be together for training, you could say, ‘OK, I’m going to make an event now.’ Do you think if you (did) say, ‘OK, Cris, you’re going to have a fight,’ I’m going to have to make my team?” Cyborg said.
“You know, I have to put my team together. We are going to be together, training and then you put the risk of the family around you. I think you have to wait and have respect for the process. Be patient.”
The tension between the former UFC champion and the UFC president has been brewing for some time. Their animosity reached a boiling point in 2019 when White accused Cyborg of avoiding a rematch against her former opponent, and the current UFC featherweight champion, Amanda Nunes. After being released from her UFC contract, Cyborg joined the Bellator roster. In her debut, she claimed the featherweight belt from the former titleholder Julia Budd.
Currently, Cyborg and all Bellator fighters remain out of action to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. Do you think Cris Cyborg was right to call out Dana White and his fight island? Let us know in the comments below.
This article first appeared on BJPENN.com on 4/15/2020.