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Once one of the most-followed mixed-martial-arts fighters of any gender, Gina Carano has all but disappeared from the public eye following her August 2009 Strikeforce title loss to Cristiane “Cyborg” Santos and subsequent acting gig.
Carano, who appears in famed director Steven Soderbergh’s 2011 film release “Knockout,” hasn’t fought professionally since that loss, which was the first of her career.
And though she isn’t booked for any upcoming shows, Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) he hopes to have her back shortly.
“We will be reaching out to her soon,” Coker said after Saturday’s latest Showtime-televised event. “She’s still part of the family.
“We miss you Gina.”
After the collapse of EliteXC, Carano signed with Strikeforce, who put together the fight with Santos, in 2009. The Carano-Santos bout actually had been long teased by EliteXC, and the pieces finally were put in place for the matchup. But the organization’s financial collapse and promotional demise scrapped the long-awaited bout.
Strikeforce officials, though, eventually signed both competitors and put the fight in the main event of their August 2009 show. (Just how big was the fight? It earned top billing over title fights of Renato “Babalu” Sobral vs. Gegard Mousasi and Gilbert Melendez vs. Mitsuhiro Ishida.)
Unfortunately for Carano, Santos continued her hot streak and posted her eight consecutive win after earning the TKO victory in the final second of the first round.
The loss spoiled Carano’s perfect 7-0 record.
Despite the now-near-yearlong layoff, Carano remains a top draw, and the 28-year-old certainly would be a welcome addition to any of Strikeforce’s upcoming CBS-televised cards.
But as of now, her return date is unknown.
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Even though we haven’t seen much action from Gina lately, shes still rounding out the Top 10 Women’s Pound for Pound Rankings:
10. Gina Carano (10): This was a tough one. Most of the feedback I got in my previous rankings came from people who thought Carano had no business in the Top 10 because she’s not really committed to fighting. And I also heard that I had snubbed Rosi Sexton by leaving her off my last list. Maybe. But considering that Carano knocked Sexton out when they fought in 2006 — and considering that Carano’s only loss is to Cyborg — I’m keeping Carano in my Top 10. For now.
You can view the rest of the list here
Fear not ladies and gentleman (mostly gentleman), Carano hasn’t been taken to another planet, nor is she the victim of some horrific act by a less than balanced fan.
Hollywood has taken up the time of many fighters within the sport of mixed martial arts and Carano just happens to be one of them.
Ryan Couture, son of UFC Hall of Famer Randy Couture, was able to shed some insight yesterday via email when he wrote, “I saw Gina briefly over the holidays and it sounds like she’s been working long days in preparation for her upcoming film role.”
Hollywood seems to wear out even the most conditioned of athletes. The time spent preparing for a fight is grueling, to say the least, but let’s not take anything away from the hours spent working in front of the camera.
“It won’t be until shooting wraps on that project that she’ll be able to shift her focus back to fighting,” Couture continued. “At the time that I spoke to her she didn’t have a timeframe [for a return] in mind, but did mention that she missed training and was eager to get back to it.”
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