Miesha Tate has claimed she was not “out of the fight” following a vicious beating from Cat Zingano at The Ultimate Fighter 17 finale.
“I got from the bottom up, got kneed a few times on the way, tried to shoot another shot, and the fight got stopped,” Tate said at the post-fight press conference, reported first by MMA Weekly, following the third round TKO that came courtesy four unanswered knees and an elbow to her head.
The barrage of offense from unbeaten Zingano came after Tate had controlled the first round and some of the second. However, Zingano started to impose her power in the second, and by the 2:55 mark of round three, referee Kim Winslow had seen enough.
Tate, however, claims she hadn’t.
“I’m definitely not happy, and, uh, f***, I still felt like I was in the fight when it stopped,” Tate said. “I’m a fighter. I wanted to keep fighting. I came out really strong. In those first two rounds, I felt excellent. She’s [Zingano] pretty heavy from top position, but she [Winslow] told me, ‘Show me something.'”
Tate continued: “I don’t know what you want. You know, I set up, I got a double, I shot up and got back on my feet. I took some damage because of that, because I was trying to listen to the referee. She f***ing stopped the fight. What do you want, you know?”
Ever the gracious loser, Miesha Tate also cried foul on the Zingano knees that were the beginning of her end.
“It all happened so fast in the fight. I don’t really recall. I consciously think it was illegal but someone sent me a picture and was like, ‘On the first knee, you were on your hands and knees and you were going to get up. She kneed you on the way up while your hand was still clearly on the ground,’ and sent me a picture and I was like, ‘Oh I guess that’s a valid point.'”
Asked if she would protest the outcome of the fight should instant replay footage show she was justified in her suspicions, Tate replied, “I’d like to see it, but I don’t think it’s going to change the results, you know what I mean? I’m pissed to say the least.”
Here’s the full tirade:
The Bleacher Report noted that Cat Zingano was pressed on whether any of her knees were illegal, and said she had “not yet been able to review footage of the fight and therefore wasn’t sure of the exact sequence reporters were asking about.”
Tate has historically had trouble accepting defeat. After a verbal back-and-forth with Ronda Rousey last year — and a first-round loss — she later claimed she would rip the UFC women’s bantamweight champion’s face-off in a rematch.
With Zingano’s victory Saturday night, it will be a while before that rematch happens, if it occurs at all.
Two of Tate’s last three fights haven’t gone well, and The Inquisitr speculated last week that her days could be numbered because of the influx of talented female athletes into the sport.
Of course, Tate’s mouth and her press savvy could keep her relevant beyond her talent. It’s easy to see how the rant on Saturday night might position her for a rematch against either winner when Cat Zingano and Ronda Rousey face each other later this year.
While before, the bad blood with Rousey was a huge selling point to a rematch for Tate, the buildup to TUF 17’s bout was largely void of drama.
Now, should Zingano dethrone Rousey later this year, Tate could use her newfound bad blood for a rematch, whether it’s deserved or not.
Do you think Miesha Tate should have been allowed to continue?