In September, former UFC featherweight champion Cris Cyborg announced that she had signed with Bellator after testing the waters of free agency. The 34-year-old veteran opted not to re-sign with the UFC due to her strained relationship with Dana White.
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On a more positive note, Cyborg excelled early in her UFC tenure by capturing the UFC Women’s Featherweight Championship in July 2017. Afterward, she was quick to thank her two main coaches: Jason Parillo, who is responsible for her dangerous and strategic striking, and Tito Ortiz, a former light heavyweight champion who helped evolve her wrestling and overall grappling ability.
In an interview with theScore’s James Lynch, Ortiz revealed that he no longer works with Cyborg as they don’t see eye to eye.
“I haven’t worked with Cris Cyborg since before the Amanda fight,” Ortiz said. “Her boyfriend, I guess you can say manager also, did some bad decisions for her and I kind of had to step away.”
Ortiz, too, has made his fair share of bad decisions in the past. He once was a poster boy for the UFC, but then quickly went from promotional superstar to free agent; the bad blood with Dana White continues to boil to this day.
And because of this, Ortiz didn’t want Cyborg to repeat the same mistakes.
“I made a lot of mistakes with the UFC, and I tried to keep her from doing the same mistakes,” Ortiz said.
“She’s a big girl, and she can make her decisions, but she was making the wrong decisions. Or I could say her boyfriend was making the wrong decisions for her. But that was just my opinion and I wish all the luck to her.
“I tried to give as much as I possibly could to her, but she just was willing to listen to someone else who hasn’t been in the same shoes that I have been in.
“I guess everyone learns from mistakes, and hopefully, she’ll learn from the mistakes that she’s made and make a positive reinforcement for the future for her.
Steven specialises in MMA and Lethwei. He loves a good 1-2 down the middle.