After defeating Miesha Tate in her most recent bout last April, Cat Zingano has gone through a number of issues outside of the cage that have derailed her return to the sport. The physical and personal setbacks have kept Zingano out of action despite being the No. 1 contender, but it always seemed like she was poised for a title shot upon her return.
Well, until now.
In a recent discussion with the media, UFC president Dana White said that Zingano is still the No. 1 contender in the women’s bantamweight division but she is unlikely to receive an immediate title shot when she is able to get back inside of the octagon.
“Cat Zingano is still No. 1 contender, but she will probably fight again before getting Rousey or Alexis Davis,” White said, via Damon Martin of FOX Sports.
It is unfortunate for Zingano, but it could also be to her benefit.
By giving Zingano a “tune up” fight, the UFC will have more time to promote her as a challenger to Rousey’s belt.
They were hoping that season 18 of The Ultimate Fighter would give Zingano that platform to promote herself, but a torn ACL forced her out of the show and led to Tate taking over Zingano’s spot.
A tune up fight will also allow Zingano to fine tune her skills and shake off any potential ring rust before getting into the cage opposite a best like Ronda Rousey, assuming she is able to get past Alexis Davis at UFC 175 on Fourth of July weekend.