This biggest women’s MMA matchup that Bellator could make finally goes down tomorrow night. In the co-main event of the historic Bellator 300 card, one of the greatest of all time makes her return. Featherweight champion Cris Cyborg (26-2) is back as she takes on surging top contender “Alpha” Cat Zingano (14-4).
Zingano made the jump over to Bellator in 2020. From the moment she joined the promotion, this is the fight that she’s been calling for. When she signed, she had lost a lot of steam in her career having gone 1-4 leading up to her first fight. However, she’s been sensational since coming over. Zingano has gone a perfect 4-0 which has earned her this shot against Cyborg.
If there’s a Mount Rushmore for women’s MMA, Cris Cyborg is firmly in there. Cyborg is one of the greatest to ever do it. She’s been a world champion everywhere she’s gone from Strikeforce to the UFC to Bellator. Cyborg lost her professional MMA debut all the way back in 2005, but if you throw that out, Cyborg is 26-1 in 27 fights with the lone loss coming to another all time great, Amanda Nunes.
Cyborg, like Zingano, signed with Bellator and made her debut in 2020. She immediately went into a title fight and defeated longtime champion Julia Budd. In the promotion, she’s 5-0, but she hasn’t fought in 18 months. Her last two fights have come in the boxing ring, but this bout against Zingano has brought her back to defend her belt.
Bellator 300 Prediction
The game plan and path to victory is very clear for Cat Zingano. I’m not saying it’s clear in that it will be easy, I’m saying it’s clear because she really only has one path. That one path is figuring out a way to impose her will in the grappling and getting Cris Cyborg to the mat. If she cannot land takedowns, she’s a sitting duck.
I’m very curious to watch these two in the clinch. We know how physically strong Cris Cyborg is. However, will she be just as strong against someone like Cat Zingano who might be able to match that strength. Also, I’m curious to see the MMA conditioning of Cyborg. She’s been boxing over the last year and I’ll be curious to see if we see any cardio issues if this turns into a grappling heavy matchup.
This isn’t as cut and dry as I think it was a year ago. That said, I still like Cyborg at Bellator 300. I just think her advantage is so overwhelming on the feet that eventually, she’ll land a big shot and blitz Zingano to get her out of there. My guess is that it happens in the second round.
Prediction: Cris Cyborg by TKO – Round 2