Many fighters work hard in hopes of one day making it to the UFC. Cat Zingano was already there, but it came to an end when she was released from the UFC roster in 2019.
“I didn’t want to take the ultimatum this time,” Zingano said in her statement to ESPN. “So I guess you can say it was mutual. I had a project that was very, very important to me, and to the MMA community and fans, and I needed to put me, my son, my training and that first before I had anything to give to the UFC,” she added. Still, Cat made it clear that her fighting days are from from over.
“It’s shitty timing, but it happens, and I’m still a fighter and ready to fuck shit up.”
We now know that project had something to do with actree Halle Berry. According to TMZ, the former UFC bantamweight title challenger is suing the legendary actress after she claims Halle offered her a movie role but was ultimately snubbed.
More from the report:
“According to the lawsuit, obtained by TMZ, Cat claims she met with Halle back in July, 2019 to talk about a movie HB was directing, “Bruised,” and says Halle told her she was perfect for the project.
Cat claims Halle told her to keep her schedule clear because film production was on the horizon, but she says the UFC came calling soon thereafter with a big fight offer.
In the docs, Cat claims she talked to Halle about the fight offer and claims Halle advised she pass on the fight if she wanted to be in the film, citing liability concerns from the movie’s insurer.
Cat claims she agonized over the decision — the movie versus the big fight — and says she ultimately turned down the fight. She says the UFC then released her from her contract.”
That’s when things got even worse when Cat says she informed Halle on her decision not to fight and her subsequent release from the UFC. Halle then told her she could no longer be involved in the movie because she was no longer fighting in the UFC. She claims she was told the movie could only work with UFC fighters.
Cat added that Berry cut off all communication with her. She is now suing for unspecified damages.
In October 2019, Cat signed a multifight deal with Bellator. She last fought in April 2021, where she submitted Olivia Parker in the first round.