After months of contentious public debate, the UFC and Cris Cyborg appear poised to officially separate, as the promotion nears finalization of her requested release.
Cyborg, through her managers at Primetime 360, recently made the request, which is in the closing stages of being granted.
"We are finalizing the release and it should be completed soon," Primetime 360's George Prajin told MMA Fighting on Tuesday. "There have been no hold-ups. In fact, we are very thankful to the UFC and Strikeforce for being very cooperative and understanding."
Prajin, who partners with Tito Ortiz in managing Cyborg, said Ortiz and Cyborg would host a press conference on Friday at the Punishment Training Center in Huntington Beach, Calif., to discuss her future plans.
Cyborg was Strikeforce's featherweight champion under its previous ownership, but fought only once after the promotion was purchased by UFC owners Zuffa, LLC. In that bout, Cyborg won in a 16-second knockout, but that victory was eventually overturned to a no contest after she tested positive for the banned steroid stanozolol. She had her fighter's license suspended for one year and was fined $2,500.
After that ban lapsed, she was expected to resume her career as a top contender to face bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey, but issues surrounding the weight at which the fight would be contested have seemingly made it an impossibility.
While Rousey has insisted that Cyborg make the bantamweight 135-pound limit, Cyborg (10-1, 1 no contest) cited her doctors' advice in saying she could not safely cut down to the weight, which is 10 pounds below her usual fighting weight. Instead, she offered to fight Rousey at a catch weight of 140 pounds.
Zuffa has sided with Rousey in the fray, eventually choosing Liz Carmouche to face Rousey while suggesting that a catch weight fight would do nothing to establish the nascent UFC women's division.
In recent weeks, UFC president Dana White has reiterated several times that there is no place for Cyborg in the organization if she can't cut down to 135. The UFC president offered to pay for diet and conditioning guru Mike Dolce to assist her with the move, but it appears that Cyborg is sticking to her guns, and will soon take her career to a new home.