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Cris Cyborg wants to finish UFC contract, fight women’s boxing champ Cecilia Braekhus

Cris Cyborg has visions of becoming a two-sport champion.

The current UFC and former Strikeforce and Invicta FC featherweight champion really wants to fight undisputed women’s welterweight boxing champion Cecilia Braekhus — and she has a plan to make it happen.

Cyborg says she’ll be freed from her UFC contractual obligations following two more fights or by next March, whichever comes first. And from there, she’d like to challenge the 33-0 Braekhus.

“I want to fight boxing,” Cyborg said on Monday’s edition of The MMA Hour. “After the two fights, I want to go to fight boxing and I want the to fight the world champ Cecilia Brooks or it can be [top welterweight contender Layla] McCarter, and maybe after that I can come back for MMA. But I would like to fight in a boxing fight and I want to fight now because now it’s viable.”

Cyborg expects to defend her featherweight belt against the winner of the UFC 224 bout between Holly Holm and Megan Anderson, and then would like to finish her UFC contract with a superfight against bantamweight champion Amanda Nunes.

A fight with Braekhus wouldn’t be personal, as the two trained together in preparation for Cyborg’s UFC 219 title defense against Holm. But becoming a two-sport champ, as Holm did, is the sort of challenge that appeals to Cyborg at this stage in her career.

“She went to my camp for Holly Holm,” Cyborg said of Braekhus. “She went to my camp. I don’t have anything against her. ... She’s from boxing, I’m from MMA and I think I can go over there and do — I don’t know if I can be champion in boxing, but I can do the best I can. I can make history, and I think if I train for six months or four months boxing, I can do great.”

Cyborg noted that Braekhus has long since called her out, and that the success of the Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor crossover superfight made her believe such a bout could be viable.

“Nothing against her, but she’s already asking to fight me last year,” Cyborg said. “This is last year before McGregor fought Mayweather she asked to fight me. And after McGregor fought with Mayweather, I thought it may be possible, maybe a dream come true. I think I can take the opportunity, maybe I can do this next year.”

There are still lots hurdles to clear before even speculating on where such a bout would be contested, and under which promotional banner. The UFC, for one, may have something to say about Cyborg’s claim that she’s not bound to a champion’s clause in her contract, which would be unique among UFC champs. But Cyborg is confident her fans will follow her over to her new venture, should it come to pass.

“I know I’m going to have a lot of options, I can’t say now because there are too many contracts,” Cyborg said. “I think the people want to know how my fans like to watch my fights. I do big numbers on a lot of channels and then I think they’re really happy. And if I go to the boxing, I think they’re going to appreciate my work. And I love fights when people appreciate what I am doing.”

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