Updates from Monday, July 14
Bleacher Report lead MMA writer Jeremy Botter reports on some of the conflicts in the way of Gina Carano's potential move to the UFC:
Expect to see Gina Carano added to the UFC's roster by the end of next week.
According to ESPN's Brett Okamoto, UFC President Dana White and CEO Lorenzo Fertitta will meet with Carano next week in Los Angeles, and a deal is expected to be made on the spot. Add this to the UFC's recent signing of undefeated striking phenom Holly Holm, and it's clear that the organization is committed to shining a spotlight on women's MMA moving forward.
"One down, one to go," White told ESPN. "I'm going to meet with Gina next week and get that f---ing thing done. Next week, man. It's just a matter of me and Lorenzo going to jump on a plane to Los Angeles, get in a room with her and her lawyer and get this thing done."
Carano (7-1) brought women's MMA to the masses during her undefeated run from June 2006 to October 2008. She was pretty, personable and could not be matched inside the cage.
However, she ended her mixed martial arts career on a sour note, losing in dramatic first-round TKO fashion to Cristiane "Cyborg" Justino in August 2009 before calling it quits to pursue an acting career.
With the ever-changing MMA landscape and the dominance of current UFC women's bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey, however, Carano's name is back in the mix. The former Strikeforce standout hasn't fought in five years, but UFC 183: Rousey vs. Carano would be an all-but-guaranteed smash hit at the box office.
Competitively, the fight—on paper at least—leaves plenty to be desired, but the buildup would be huge, the coverage would be extensive and the UFC could potentially break out of its recent pay-per-view funk with this blockbuster matchup.
Rousey recently told the media (h/t International Business Times) that a fight with Carano was always her dream, and now that dream appears a step closer to becoming reality.
"Whether she (Carano) ever wants (to fight) again or not is entirely up to her, but ever since that day when I had that first taste of women's MMA, she's the fight I wanted," Rousey said.
Stay tuned to Bleacher Report as Gina Carano's situation continues to develop.