If the name Cat Zingano has fallen off the radar in the UFC women's Bantamweight division it may be because she hasn't competed since her devastating loss to champion Ronda Rousey in just 14 seconds at UFC 184.
Seldom has an undefeated prospect (9-0) -- with six consecutive finishes headed into UFC 184 -- crashed and burned so quickly under the glare of a UFC belt. But, after nearly seven months away from the sport, Zingano told "Inside MMA" she's ready to come back.
Without specifically making it an excuse, Zingano explained that her fight with Rousey occurred only one year after her husband committed suicide and shortly after sustaining injuries in her fight against Amanda Nunes. Both reasons may not have put her in either the best mental or physical condition to step into the Octagon with a killer like Rousey.
"It's all been difficult," she said. "Not any step in the road in this last couple of years has been easy but one thing that I hold true to me is I have a little boy looking to me as an example and everything I do career-wise, personally I have him watching me and I'm either set up to be a good example or a bad example."
It's likely Zingano has played out the scenario over and over in her head about what she could have done differently against Rousey. It's a question reporters continue to ask her, and she's been fairly consistent in her response.
"I have to say I would stick true to my roots as far as being aggressive but I think I would come out at maybe a different pace," she said, adding she would try and read Rousey and find her rhythm before attacking.
Like most competitive fighters, Zingano wants nothing more than a rematch but is fully aware she's going to need to build up a winning resume again before that happens. Still, if Holly Holm falls at UFC 193, there are few contenders for the belt other than Miesha Tate, Amanda Nunes and Cat Zingano.
"It's almost a bit of history repeating itself again. It comes down to me, Miesha (Tate) and Ronda (Rousey) again. In a way I'm kind of grateful about it. I think that if that should happen again it's an opportunity for history to be set right."
Zingano said she wants to fight before the end of 2015, although nothing has been booked yet by UFC matchmakers.