Although Dana White remained adamant that Cat Zingano is still the women's bantamweight division's No. 1 contender, he suggested that the undefeated competitor would likely have to take another fight before facing the champ.
Zingano has been on the sidelines since defeating Miesha Tate back at The Ultimate Fighter 17 Finale 13 months ago. After dealing with extensive ACL recovery as well as the death of her husband, Zingano is ready to return to the octagon.
It was her husband's death that was initially the most concerning for White, yet he appeared satisfied that Zingano was back in a "decent place" and prepared to return to the octagon.
"I'm happy that she is mentally back in a decent place,: White said at the pre-fight media scrum. "I wouldn't say good but at least in a place where she can get back in the gym and start thinking about fighting again."
White also revealed that Zingano would likely have to take another fight before facing UFC bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey, even though she is the division's No. 1 contender.
"She is No. 1. She'll probably have to take another fight before that. She'll probably have to take a fight. She's got to make some money. She's got to get back and let people see her again."
Rousey is scheduled to meet Alexis Davis in the co-main event spot of UFC 175 in July. While there is no clear cut challenger for the title following that contest, it will be interesting to see who the UFC choses to match Zingano against.