(Picture of Shayna Baszler courtesy of ProElite.com)
A female bout to best contested at 140 pounds between Shayna Baszler and Cristiane Cyborg has been added to the card for the next installment of CBS’ “Saturday Night Fights” on July 26 at 9 p.m. ET.
The event, which is scheduled to take place at the Stockton Arena in Stockton, Calif., will also feature an EliteXC middleweight title rematch between Robbie Lawler and Scott Smith; Jake Shields vs. Nick Thompson for the vacant EliteXC welterweight title; and a 160 pound lightweight clash between Thomas “Wildman” Denny and Stockton’s own Nick Diaz.
Baszler is 3-0 since joining EliteXC with wins over Jan Finney, Jennifer Tate, and Keiko “Tama Chan” Tamai. All three of her victories took place during ShoXC events that were televised on SHOWTIME. This will be Baszler’s first major EliteXC bout and it will take place on primetime network television.
Cyborg, who is married to professional mixed martial artist Evangelista “Cyborg” Santos, is 4-0 as a pro fighter, according to Sherdog’s fight finder. Competing exclusively in Brazil, Cyborg’s most notable victory took place at Samurai Storm 9 in November of 2005, where she recorded a unanimous decision victory over Vanessa Porto.
Cyborg is somewhat of an enigma in that there is strong sentiment amongst some hardcore fight fans that she has the potential to be the top female fighter in the world at 140 pounds. However, Cyborg has yet to garner that recognition as she has yet to fight on a major platform. Several attempts in recent months to bring to the U.S. have failed due to visa issues.
An extremely strong fighter with dangerous standup ability, her fight with Baszler will make for a unique blending of styles. While Baszler is very capable on her feet, she could be surrendering considerable size to Cyborg. However, on paper, it would appear that Baszler could have a strong advantage when it comes to the ground.
While nothing official has been stated by EliteXC officials, there have been rumblings that the winner of the Baszler vs. Cyborg fight could find themselves in the mix for a second CBS fight this October against Gina Carano.
“Saturday Night Fights” on CBS will be preceded by a one hour telecast on SHOWTIME at 8 p.m. ET the same night that will feature Antonio Silva and Justin Eilers fighting for the vacant EliteXC heavyweight title. Rising featherweight Wilson Reis is slated to fight Brian Caraway and it has also been officially announced that light heavyweight Rafael Feijao has been added to the card against a yet to be announced opponent.