After claiming the featherweight crown in her promotional debut at Bellator 238 this past January, Cristiane Justino is flirting with the Sweet Science once again.
In a recent interview with TMZ Sports, “Cyborg” revealed that she is considering boxing for her next combat sports appearance. Justino has lost just twice in 25 professional mixed martial arts bouts.
“I’m training a lot of boxing, and I was thinking maybe I do my next fight with boxing,” she said. “We’re thinking about [it]… We’re not sure yet. I’m just doing my best.
It’s not the first time the Brazilian has explored options outside of the MMA realm: In 2017, she received a boxing license from the California State Athletic Commission with designs on competing in the junior middleweight division.
That didn’t come to fruition, but Justino has trained with two-time Olympic gold medalist Claressa Shields in the past. When asked about potential opponents in the ring, Justino mentioned undefeated boxer Ceclia Braekhus.
“Me and Cecilia Braekhus always talk back and forth. I think everyone would be a very good match for me. I like a challenge. I never look for the easy way,” Justino said. “I like to train hard and make the best fight for my career, for my fans.”
For now, Justino is keeping an open mind.
“I never think I know everything, just learn every day and open my mind,” she said. “Boxing is very different than MMA. A lot of things you have to learn, but I’m learning every day.”
When the coronavirus pandemic dies down and Bellator MMA returns to business, “Cyborg” will also have to defend her 145-pound belt. Bellator has postponed its schedule through May, and Justino expects to eventually have a meeting with promotion president Scott Coker when the time comes to book her next fight.
“I’m training. Let’s see what opportunities (come),” Justino said. “For sure Scott and I will talk and see what is the best thing for me.”