Things are heating up between women’s featherweight champ Cris Cyborg and Cat Zingano. And while an apparent knee injury to “Alpha” Cat at Bellator 282 may delay a potential fight between the two, there’s certainly no love lost between them.
Ahead of Friday’s card at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, CT, Zingano (13-4) called for independent drug testing if the pair were to eventually fight. Defeating Pam Sorenson on the preliminary card Friday, in the process notching her third straight win, Zingano has ensured that fight is closer than ever.
Cyborg, however, had some choice words for Zingano ahead of the fight, suggesting the former UFC bantamweight’s struggles a few year back were due to the introduction of USADA, who oversee that promotion’s anti-doping program.
“Cat Zingano 9-0 with wins over Miesha [Tate] and [Amanda] Nunes. Enters USADA in 2015 and goes 1-4 competing,” a post on Cyborg’s verified Twitter account stated. “Now she’s 2-0 after leaving USADA and fighting on YouTube Friday night and thinks I care what she wants.”
Cat Zingano 9-0 with wins over Miesha and Nunes. Enters USADA in 2015 and goes 1-4 competing. Now she’s 2-0 after leaving USADA and fighting on YouTube Friday night and thinks I care what she wants https://t.co/NNvZfXp92N
— 👀 #Bellator282 on CrisCyborg.com (@criscyborg) June 22, 2022
Independent testing? Cyborg doesn’t seem interested. Zingano gave her reaction to Cyborg’s words following her latest win, speaking to Cageside Press during Friday’s Bellator 282 post-fight press conference.
“Drug testing is not new to me. I’ve been wrestling since I was in college, and working through that. I think she said something about, ever since 2014, is when things changed for me, but I don’t know if you remember my life in 2014, that was a really f*cked up time,” said Zingano, who has gone through the loss of a partner, and numerous injuries, over the years. “If she wants to overlook those kinds of things and think that you can walk through those without problems, f*ck her. I figured out what I’m doing here. I haven’t needed to do the things she’s had to do in order to win. I just work hard and have the right people and believe in myself.”
“I don’t know what else she’s saying,” Zingano added. “But I didn’t come here to fight with a sword in my mouth. I’m fighting with a sword in a fight. I put my focus and energy on fighting her, and that’s what I’m doing here.”
Asked whether the drug testing issue was a line in the sand for her, and whether any other fight made sense, Zingano wasn’t sure. “I don’t know. I have no idea. I guess I haven’t thought about that, I just figured it would happen.”
Later, however, she appeared open to a match-up with Arlene Blencowe. “Me and Arelene have had our names in each other’s ears for a while,” Zigano noted. The pair had a fight lined up earlier this year, Cat revealed, but quarantine requirements for Australia’s Blencowe forced her out of it. “She’s awesome. I have a lot of respect for her, and I know that we’re all building this together, so it would be an honor to fight her.”
Watch the full Bellator 282 post-fight media scrum with Cat Zingano above.