By Ben Goldstein, Editor of CagePotato.com
As the UFC’s first-ever female champion, Ronda Rousey (left) is the biggest name in women’s MMA right now. In fact, Ronda’s popularity is growing so fast that former Strikeforce superstar Gina Carano (right) — once known as “The Face of Women’s MMA” — is becoming a distant memory for many fans. But who really deserves to be called the Greatest Female Fighter of All-Time? Let’s compare the ladies point-by-point and find out…
First and foremost, who’s hotter?
Blonde, fit, and attractive whether she’s smiling or scowling, Ronda Rousey is unquestionably one of the hottest female athletes on the planet. But Gina Carano isn’t just “hot for a fighter.” Her Hollywood-caliber looks have earned her mainstream movie roles, and some of her photo-shoots have been truly jaw-dropping. If you prefer your women to be curvy, Gina takes this one hands down.
How did they get into fighting?
Ronda was born into it. Her mother was a judo world champion, training Ronda from an early age to follow in her footsteps. (“She would wake me up from sleep to do armbars,” Ronda explained.) At 17, Rousey qualified for the 2004 Olympic Games, and won a bronze medal at the 2008 Games in Beijing, becoming the first American woman to earn an Olympic medal in women’s judo.
As for Gina? Her ex-boyfriend’s Muay Thai instructor told her she looked fat when he first met her, which inspired her to take up the sport herself and get in shape. She eventually started competing in Muay Thai, putting together a record of 12-1-1 — which is impressive, but not Olympic Medal impressive.
Who has been more successful in MMA?
Gina won her first seven fights, and her May 2008 match against Kaitlin Young was the first women’s MMA bout to be broadcast on network television. But then, she got her ass kicked by freakishly-strong Brazilian slugger Cris Cyborg in August 2009, left the sport to pursue an acting career, and hasn’t been back since. Still, she hasn’t ruled out the possibility of a comeback.
Ronda went 3-0 as an amateur MMA fighter, and is currently 7-0 as a pro. All 10 of her fights have ended by first-round armbar. Fun fact: Ronda has only allowed two of her opponents (Miesha Tate and Liz Carmouche) to survive past the first minute of the fight. In March 2012, Ronda became the 135-pound women’s champion of Strikeforce, and was brought over by the UFC later that year to launch its new women’s division. Ronda’s first UFC title defense in February did impressive numbers on pay-per-view.
Is either one of them single?
Ronda is unattached, the last we heard. Gina is currently dating Superman.
Advantage: Ronda, because at least we have a chance, right?
Greatest Gina/Ronda GIF on the Internet?
We’re partial to these:
Advantage: Gina, via lip-bite hypnosis
Where can you see them next?
Ronda Rousey will star as a coach on the next season of The Ultimate Fighter on FX, and she was reportedly offered a role in the next Hunger Games movie, though she hasn’t said she’ll take it. Gina Carano will be hangin’ with The Rock in Fast & Furious 6, and she has the lead role in another action movie this year called In the Blood.
So…who would win in a fight?
Gina is a more accomplished striker and she’d have a slight size advantage — she competed at 145 pounds at the end of her career, while Ronda now fights at a shredded 135. But Ronda has been able to take down and tap out every single woman she’s ever come across in MMA, and we can’t see her having much more difficulty in this hypothetical matchup, especially considering how long Gina has been out of the game. Of course, if the fight were held under American Gladiator rules, it would be a totally different story.
Advantage: Ronda by first round armbar
FINAL SCORE: By a tally of 4-3, Ronda Rousey wins this matchup and should be rightly considered the greatest female MMA fighter ever. Gina may be destined for big-screen stardom, but she can’t match up to Ronda’s athletic achievements or dominance in the cage. Agree or disagree with our analysis? Let us know in the comments section…