Could a Gina Carano return to MMA be in the cards? The former Strikeforce star hasn’t competed since a 2009 loss in a featherweight title fight against Cristiane “Cyborg” Justino, but rumblings of a possible Carano return have gotten louder in the last few weeks. Carano confirmed during a guest appearance on “The Arsenio Hall Show” that she is considering a return and will meet next week with UFC President Dana White.
There’s no denying that a Carano fight against current UFC bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey would be a huge event for the organization. “Rowdy” is on board with the idea of fighting Carano and would even be willing to meet her at a catchweight of 145 pounds to facilitate the matchup. She has a ton of respect for Carano, who was one of the first high-profile female faces in the sport. White, for his part, has indicated that he would be interested in making a Carano fight if she was interested in making a comeback.
Rousey has been a dominant figure in the 135-pound division and most recently scored a first-round TKO win over Sara McMann at UFC 170. Rousey, much like Carano, has parlayed her new-found fame into Hollywood movie roles and magazine photoshoots. She remains unbeaten with all nine of her career victories having come inside the distance, most by way of her signature armbar submission.
The 31-year-old Carano still loves the sport and still continues to train. She admits it’s a “now or never” proposition as to whether she returns to competition. It will be extremely interesting to see whether Carano does decide on a UFC return or whether she will officially announce her retirement after a 7-1 career.
Outside of a Rousey-Cyborg matchup, this option would be as good as it gets for the UFC when it comes to a female fight. Despite a lengthy absence from competition, if Carano were to return for a future fight with Rousey, the organization’s marketing machine would be thrown into overdrive. It would have the makings of a highly attractive bout in more ways than one.
Rick LaFitte is an MMA Writer for Rant Sports