While being a highly respected female fighter, I believe Gina Carano is being protected as a fighter. Her persona is "the female face of MMA" and a loss would not be good for her career or for woman fighters in general; as well as being hard on the pockets for her and her management.
As a female fighter, I respect Carano on many levels. I applaud her for being a pretty face who is not scared of getting dirty. I want to applaud her for exposing the public to women's MMA on a greater level than any female fighter before. I want to applaud her for opening doors for women like me who are coming up and trying to make a career out of fighting. Because of her, women will be given the opportunity to make fighting more than just a hobby.
I also want to give a standing ovation to Carano for her Muay Thai ability. She can trade, and she can kick; no doubt about it. A 12-1 record is impressive to say the least. I know she must train hard to drop weight and to ready herself for her fights.
On the other hand she is not given fights that she is sure to lose or even sure to struggle in. She is at the point in her career where she has something to prove. And I believe Young will give her a challenge. In fact, I blieve Young may win this fight.
Here is why:
1. Carano has to cut an immense amount of weight. As a long time wrestler and also a submission grappler and fighter, I know a big weight drop can cause some serious problems. Thankfully, she has recovery time between the weigh-in and the fight but still cutting as she does can make a person weak, decrease condition ability, and usually makes one slower.
2. Carano does not have a ground game. Although she won against Tanya Evinger, Carano did not display a ground game. And admittedly, she does not have one.
While Evinger is a world class wrestler with decent grappling ability, (yes I know first hand), she does not have much submission ability. Had she a well thought out and executed Jujitsu plan, she would have beat Carano in the first minute of their bout. Actually, it was a sad display of Jujitsu by both parties. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=66jUPjrtnMo (see for yourself)
3. Kaitlin Young is in immaculate condition. She is lean without much weight to cut. She also looks like she has the upper hand in the strength area as compared to Carano.
4. Young also appears to have a weakness in Jujitsu since her only loss is by submission and her only wins are by KO and TKO. However, since Carano's Jujitsu game is not A-list to say the least, I do not see Carano getting the submission this time. I do not even see Carano knocking Young down in this one. And due to the styles of both fighters I am not sure any take-downs will be made. This will be a KO to the "death."
5. Young just looks tougher and quicker. She is more explosive and more of a go-getter than Carano. All and all this fight may be one of the bloodiest "stand and trades" that MMA fans will see from two females, but I have to throw the win to Young.
I however, am no expert. I guess we will have to watch and see.