Former UFC women’s bantamweight title contender Cat Zingano ( 10-4) has signed a multi-fight deal with Bellator MMA.
ESPN was the first to report the story earlier today, stating that the 37-year-old mother of one will compete at featherweight for the promotion.
Zingano was released from the UFC in August after going 1-4 in her last five fights. She would later state that the parting was “mutual” as she chose to work on a side project rather than return on the UFC’s timeline.
“I didn’t want to take the ultimatum this time,” Zingano said in her statement. “So I guess you can say it was mutual. I had a project that was very, very important to me, and to the MMA community and fans, and I needed to put me, my son, my training and that first before I had anything to give to the UFC,” she added. “It’s shitty timing, but it happens, and I’m still a fighter and ready to fuck shit up.”
“Alpha” Cat Zingano got off to a good start with UFC, picking up wins over two women who would later go on to win world titles in Miesha Tate and Amanda Nunes.
She was then offered a title shot to then champion Ronda Rousey, only to get submitted by way of armbar just 14-seconds into the contest.
From there Zingano’s time in the UFC was troubled. She experienced tragedy in her personal life when her ex-husband and father on her son took his own life. When she returned to the octagon Zingano dropped decisions to Juliana Pena, Ketlen Vieira. She bounced back with a uananimous decision victory over Marion Reneau but then suffered her final defeat with the promotion when an eye injury took her out in the first round of her fight against Megan Anderson in December 2018.
No date or opponent has been named for Zingano’s Bellator debut.