Whenever there’s a good fight in MMA, there’s bound to be controversies. Many were skeptical about the matchup between Gina Carano and Cris “Cyborg” Santos – the two leading ladies of women’s MMA. But those doubts were tossed away seconds into the fight when both women put on a show that didn’t stop until a split second before the end of the first round when ref Josh Rosenthal called the fight.
It was an action-packed single round but some wondered if the fight was called too soon since it was a split second before the end of the first round. But Cyborg was landing some serious shots towards the end. And this wasn’t typical ground and pound flailing. These were wound up bombs that were hitting home each time. Cyborg landed about five before ref Rosenthal stopped it.
Gina wasn’t acting defensively. She curled up to protect herself instead of retaliating and when that happens, it’s the ref’s job to step in. It doesn’t matter how close it is until the end of the match. It’s up to the ref to make sure the fighters are safe, not to generate a good fight.
Other critics said that Gina’s loss was bad for the female side of the sport because so many consider her the “face of women’s MMA.” Now, it’s undeniable that she has a wonderful face. But that’s not the point right now. The point is that there’s currently a female MMA titleholder, which gives other contenders something to strive for.
The only way this would be bad for women’s MMA would be if Gina were to give up on fighting altogether. Otherwise, she’s going to show that she can take a loss just like every other fighter out there, get back in the ring and try again. Hopefully we’ll see a rematch down the road.
Strikeforce: Carano vs Cyborg was an amazing display of mixed martial arts that should not be discredited. It was an explosive fight with all facets of the sport from jiu jitsu, badass Muay Thai and some serious takedowns. Now that there’s a title to hold, we should start seeing more legitimate contenders rise to the plate which causes the sport to grow, not fall.