Cat Zingano Finally Cleared To Start Training After Multiple Knee Injuries

Former number one UFC women’s bantamweight contender Cat Zingano has been out of action since her title shot clinching win over Miesha Tate at The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) 17 Finale way back in April 2013.

The emphatic victory was supposed to see Zingano coach TUF 18 opposite dominant champion Ronda Rousey, but Tate gladly stepped into that role when Zingano tore her ACL in training.

Other complications, including injuries to her other knee from overcompensating, followed as Zingano was dealt setback after setback. Her husband Mauricio Zingano was also found dead of apparent suicide earlier this year.

Today, however, it looks like “Alpha” has received her best news in quite some time. Eager to resume training, Zingano tweeted that she has been medically cleared and was getting fitted for a new mouthpiece in order to do earlier this afternoon:

So Zingano will finally return, but the UFC women’s arena has done quite a bit of moving and shaking since she went to the sidelines.

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Rousey finished Tate at UFC 168 then made a quick turnaround to destroy Sara McMann at UFC 170 in late February.

The undefeated former Olympian will next defend her belt against No. 2-ranked Alexis Davis at UFC 175 on July 5, so Zingano may be lying in wait for Rousey should she dispatch Davis.

But there’s also a distinct chance that Zingano may have to take a fight in the meantime; and truthfully, that may be in her best interest. Returning from such a long layoff to face a champion at the top of her game in Rousey would not have the odds in Zingano’s favor.

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There are a few other potentially huge match-ups for Zingano, such as a rematch with Tate, who beat fellow former title challenger Liz Carmouche at UFC on FOX 11 in April, or even a bout with rumored-to-be-returning former Strikeforce champ Gina Carano. A bout against Cristiane “Cyborg” Justino also remains an outside possibility.

No exact timetable has been set for Zingano’s next bout, but the bottom line is that she’s able to train once again. Who would you like to see her face in her long-awaited return to the cage?