As she readies to return to UFC action for the first time in what will be a year and a half, former bantamweight title challenger Cat Zingano considers her last bout -- a quick submission loss to then-champ Ronda Rousey -- philosophically and without regret. "What is there to do? It's water under the bridge," she told Chuck Mindenhall.
"I can't sit here and regret anything. I can't change anything about it. What happened, happened, and really all I can do is move forward and learn from it. I can be stubborn, and there were things about the fight I was being stubborn about, and I didn't really want to look at."
Eventually, however, "Alpha Cat" was able to be honest with herself. Then, she was able to soberly analyze her performance from a strategic point of view.
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Now, she believes she's improved. "Here I am now, seeing what I needed to see from it, removed from the situations -- all the emotions aside -- and I was able to look at it stratigically. I think I've been able to fix and maneuver what I needed to do in order to go back to that fight," she continued.
With that said, Zingano has Julianna Pena up next, not Rousey. So she has let her loss teach her some lessons on humility and is ready to move forward and win again.
"That's not the fight I'm gogint to have, now. What I have to do is [fight] a different opponent," she explained. "I feel like a different me. [Like I have] a different skill set, a different mindset. It's humbling to lose, and it's humbling to lose like that. It's a really, really, good thing. Honestly, because it definitely put me in check."
All this time Zingano has spent recovering and improving, her hunger to fight hasn't diminished at all.
"The entire time I've had the itch to go in there and fight again," she revealed.
"I feel good. I feel ready."