Women’s MMA pioneer Gina Carano has not been in active competition since 2009, but just a few years ago there were talks of her potentially returning to face Ronda Rousey, and although that never took place, apparently the talks were very real. Carano compiled a 7-1 professional record in her career, with her lone loss coming in her last fight against Cris Cyborg back in 2009. While she would go on to face other women MMA pioneers such as Julie Kedzie, Tonya Evinger, and Kaitlin Young, Carano never faced off against Rousey, the former UFC women’s bantamweight champion.
Recently, Rousey, who is now a WWE superstar said a fight with Gina Carano could be one way she returned to competition, even just for one fight. This is the second time a fight between Rousey and Carano has been discussed, although with very little traction as both women have other career priorities at this time.
On Tuesday, Gina Carano appeared as a guest on The Joe Rogan Experience and was asked about the seriousness of those rumors from just a few years ago, and she revealed that the talks were serious and then explained why the plans never came to fruition.
“It was very serious. I was living in L.A. and I had my whole team in Las Vegas, so when Dana White and Lorenzo (Fertitta) invited me out, this had to be like five years ago, they were like ‘Hey, we’d like to offer you a $1 million fight.’ And I was like ‘What took you guys so long?’ What I told Dana and Lorenzo at that time was ‘I don’t have a time, I don’t even have an idea of a team, I don’t have a gym, I didn’t have any connection into where I would do this fight camp.”
The fighter-turned-move-star knew the challenges that lied ahead for her to make the fight happen in terms of not only finding a camp but also preparing her body for a weight-cut, something she had not done in nearly a decade.
“I knew with the weight and everything it would take me three months to get the weight stabilized and then it would take me four months to actually be in fight camp, just to get back into it, I hadn’t fought in about a decade. I asked Dana if he could just please keep it quiet, don’t bring up my name, give me six months time, but you know Dana and he started pumping it up on Twitter and interviews. I was like ‘Calm down, first off I don’t even know who I’m going to train with.’ Cause then everyone knows I’m looking for a team and it made everything so much more difficult.”
Gina Carano would go on to reveal that things took a bad turn when Dana White sent her an “aggressive” text message which turned her against the idea of a comeback fight.
“He [Dana White] said something pretty aggressive over text messages, as I’m sure you know he does that. I was like ‘Ok, I’m not going to do that’ it was very simple for me. That was going to be something for me and I was excited to be back in that world, I respect Ronda and I thought that it was exciting but you can’t go back in that world and feel instantly disrespected on so many levels.”
Although she’s currently 40-years old, Gina Carano would still not completely close the door on a potential fight in the future.
“Honestly, I feel she’s [Ronda] the one as well [to have a comeback]. When [Ronda] said that, I’m so focused on my dreams in moviemaking but I guess you never want to do it and for me I’ve been looking for something to train for and get my body back to where I want it to be. There’s been this thing on my shoulders that’s like you can train and use that as your focus.”
Whether or not Gina Carano will ever have a professional fight again, but she clearly has not completely closed the door on a return, and it certainly feels as if Ronda Rousey is her hopeful opponent.
Mike Pendleton is a current contributor to MyMMANews while also hosting his “On The Mic” podcast and is a former Associate Producer at Sirius XM’s Fight Nation.
With a special passion for interviewing and talking to the very best around the fight game, you can read or listen to Mike’s work across his multiple outlets.
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