In a somewhat shocking move, former UFC women’s bantamweight title challenger Cat Zingano has been released by the UFC according to a report from MMA Junkie. While the report has yet to be confirmed by the UFC, it does shake up the division that had been looking for more challengers to champion Amanda Nunes.
Zingano entered the UFC with a win over former champion Miesha Tate at the TUF 17 Finale back in 2013, and would follow that win up with another stoppage victory over the current bantamweight champion, Amanda Nunes. Since losing to Zingano, Nunes has gone on a 9-fight winning streak, capturing the title in both the women’s bantamweight and featherweight divisions.
Following her two-fight winning streak upon entering the UFC, Cat Zingano would drop three consecutive fights over the likes of former champion Ronda Rousey, Julianna Pena, and Ketlen Vieira. Zingano would put an end to that losing skid when she defeated Marion Reneau in July of 2018.
The last time Zingano was in action with the UFC, she fought Megan Anderson at UFC 232 this past December. The fight would come to an abrupt end when Anderson’s toe would catch the eye of Zingano which would result in a stoppage victory for Anderson.
Cat Zingano had openly protested the fight but found no success in appealing the decision of the fight. In her seven UFC fights, Zingano would go 3-4 in her run with the promotion with wins coming over two champions. While she is also known for her 14-second submission loss to Ronda Rousey, Zingano has wins over some of the most notable names in the women’s bantamweight division, including Raquel Pennington who she beat during her time with Invicta FC.
With the release of Cat Zingano, there is another opening in the top-15 rankings for the women’s bantamweight division, as well as an opportunity for a new contender to emerge in the division.