Carano before the Strikeforce: Carano vs. Cyborg event, August 14, 2009
|Born||Gina Joy Carano |
April 16, 1982
Dallas County, Texas, United States
|Other names||Conviction, Crush|
|Height||5 ft 8 in (1.73 m)|
|Weight||143 lb (65 kg; 10 st 3 lb)|
|Division||Women's Middleweight (145 lb)|
|Fighting out of||Albuquerque, New Mexico|
|Team||Jackson's Mixed Martial Arts|
|Years active||2006–09 (MMA)|
|Mixed martial arts record|
|Mixed martial arts record from Sherdog|
Gina Joy Carano (born April 16, 1982) is an American actress, television personality, fitness model and a former mixed martial artist. Carano appeared as Crush, a Gladiator on American Gladiators. She has been referred to as the "Face of Women's MMA." Carano was formerly the third best 145 lb (66 kg) female fighter in the world, according to the Unified Women's MMA Rankings. Carano starred in the 2012 action film, Haywire, and will appear in the 2013 film Fast & Furious 6.
 Early life
Carano was born in Dallas County, Texas, the middle daughter of Dana Joy (née Cason) and Glenn Thomas Carano. She has two sisters. Carano has said that she has a "small percentage" of Italian ancestry. Her father played for the Dallas Cowboys as a backup quarterback from 1977–1983 and for the USFL Pittsburgh Maulers as a starter in 1984, their only year of operations.
She graduated from Trinity Christian High School in Las Vegas, Nevada, where she led the girls basketball team to a state title. She also played volleyball and softball. She attended the University of Nevada, Reno for a year and then University of Nevada, Las Vegas for three, where she minored in psychology.
 Mixed martial arts career
Carano started her career in the sport of Muay Thai. Gina's ex-boyfriend Kevin Ross, a pro Muay Thai fighter, got her involved in Muay Thai. After achieving a Muay Thai record of 12–1–1, Carano received an offer from Jamie Levine to participate in the first-ever sanctioned female MMA bout in Nevada with World Extreme Fighting to fight Leiticia Pestova. She was invited to the World Pro Fighting show in Las Vegas to fight Rosi Sexton. Carano won the fight by knocking out Sexton late in the second round.
Carano faced Elaina Maxwell at Strikeforce: Triple Threat on December 8, 2006. She won the fight via unanimous decision. Carano proved critics wrong when she defeated Maxwell for the second time; the first victory coming in a Muay Thai bout. The fight was the first female fight in Strikeforce.
She fought on the February 10, 2007, Showtime EliteXC card, defeating Julie Kedzie via unanimous decision in what was called the "Fight of the Night." The fight was the first televised female fight on Showtime.
Her scheduled bout against Jan Finney at the EliteXC/K-1 Dynamite!! USA event on June 2, 2007 was canceled due to illness. The Fight Network and other news outlets reported that she was rushed to the hospital via ambulance due to dehydration while attending a World Extreme Cagefighting event as a spectator.
Carano fought on the September 15, 2007, Showtime EliteXC card, where she defeated Tonya Evinger via rear naked choke for her first career win by submission. Carano impressed critics by holding her own on the ground before submitting Evinger late in the first round.
Carano defeated former HOOKnSHOOT Champion Kaitlin Young at EliteXC: Primetime on May 31, 2008. A day before the fight, Carano failed to make weight for her fight after weighing in at 144.5 lb (65.5 kg). Although most MMA organizations set weight classes at 135 (bantamweight) and 145 (featherweight) pounds (61.2 and 65.8 kg, respectively), EliteXC opted to create a women's weight class at 140 pounds. Carano agreed to forfeit 12.5% of her "show" purse to Young, and the fight remained on the card.
Leading up to her fight against Kelly Kobold, there was much controversy over whether or not Gina would make weight for the fight, as she had fought only once in the past year and had failed to make weight. Gina assured critics that she would be able to make weight since she had hired a nutritionist to help with her dieting. At the weigh-in for the Kobold fight on October 3, 2008, Gina Carano weighed in at 142.75 pounds on her first attempt. After removing her sports bra, a towel-covered Carano weighed in a second time at 142.5 pounds. On her third attempt, without any clothes on, Carano weighed 141 pounds and successfully made weight.
Early on, Kobold was intent on pressing Carano in the clinch, while working for the takedown throughout the fight. Kobold managed a takedown in the second round, but the round ended before she could take meaningful advantage of it. Carano worked her opportunities by hitting Kobold at every turn whenever the fighters separated, while opening a huge gash on the inside of her opponent's eyebrow in the first round. At the end of the third round, Carano looked to finish the fight as she unloaded a head kick that landed flush on Kobold's chin, but Kobold remained on her feet and the bout came to a close.
 Strikeforce Women's Middleweight Championship bout
After Strikeforce purchased the assets of ProElite, Carano, along with other fighters within the defunct promotion, became contractually linked with Strikeforce after many months of a stalemate regarding their free agent status.
It was announced at Strikeforce: Lawler vs. Shields that Carano's fight against Cristiane Santos would take place on August 15, 2009, at Strikeforce: Carano vs. Cyborg. Strikeforce created their first Women's Championship for the bout.
Though the 145-pound division is most commonly referred to as featherweight, Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker stated that the title would be known as the Strikeforce Women's Lightweight Championship. The title was later renamed the Strikeforce Women's Middleweight Championship.
Carano lost the fight against Santos by TKO at 4:59 in the first round.
|This section is outdated. (May 2012)|
Following her loss to Santos, Carano was out of action for the remainder of 2009 and the entirety of 2010. In November 2010, Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker stated he was hopeful that she would return in 2011. Carano's return was formally announced in February 2011.
Strikeforce announced at its April 9, 2011, event in San Diego that Carano would make her return on June 18 at the American Airlines Center in Dallas, Texas, during the Overeem vs. Werdum Strikeforce event. Her opponent would have been Sarah D'Alelio. This bout would have been the first women's bout ever held by Zuffa, who have been detractors of women's MMA in the past. Critics assert that the reason for the turnaround is Carano's marketability. Initially Strikeforce announced Carano failed her pre-fight medical examination due to an unknown issue and the fight was pulled from the card. As the story continues to develop it's become public that Carano was medically cleared by the Athletic Commission but was removed from the card for unknown reasons. Her return date is unknown; Carano has not fought since August 2009 and has not been scheduled for any upcoming events.
 Television and film career
Carano starred in the cult film Ring Girls. Based on true events, Ring Girls is a fast-paced story about five American women from Las Vegas who take on the ultimate challenge of fighting the best female Muay Thai fighters in the world.
Along with Lisa King, Carano served as a mentor to aspiring female fighters in the Oxygen reality series Fight Girls. She appeared as "Crush" on the NBC show American Gladiators, in which she starred in the workout video of the show along with Monica Carlson (Jet), Jennifer Widerstrom (Phoenix), Michael O'Hearn (Titan), Tanoai Reed (Toa) and Don "Hollywood" Yates (Wolf). The DVD was released on December 16, 2008. She is featured in the Michael Jai White film Blood and Bone.
In September 2009, Carano landed the leading role in the spy thriller movie Haywire, directed by Steven Soderbergh. Christy Lemire of The Associated Press stated: "[Carano's] dialogue delivery may seem a bit stiff — and she has acknowledged that Soderbergh made some tweaks to her voice in post-production — but she has tremendous presence: an intriguing mix of muscular power and eye-catching femininity".
In February 2012, Carano was cast in In the Blood, an action thriller being directed by John Stockwell (Into the Blue, Blue Crush). The film has been described as being in the vein of Taken, In the Blood is set in motion when a husband disappears while vacationing in the Caribbean with his wife, played by Carano. The grieving wife passionately and recklessly pursues the men whom she believes kidnapped and killed him. Stockwell stated, "This role will showcase not only Gina’s fighting skills, but also her acting abilities as her character struggles to [rein] in her violent past".
In September 2012, Carano signed on as the lead in an all-female ensemble action film described as the female version of The Expendables. Producer Adi Shankar said, "I don't know how I'm supposed to make a movie that is supposed to be the female version of The Expendables without Gina Carano in it. It would be like making Twix without caramel or Jamba Juice without jamba".
She was profiled in a feature story for the ESPN series E:60. She was voted "Hottest Woman In America" by Big Biz Magazine in the Spring 2008 issue. On May 13, 2008, "Gina Carano" was the fastest-rising search on Google and third most searched person on Yahoo!.
She was ranked as #5 on the "Top Ten Influential Women of 2008" list on Yahoo!
In May 2009, it was announced that Carano was ranked #16 in Maxim's Hot 100 list.
She is one of the cover athletes along with Serena Williams for the October 19, 2009 edition of ESPN The Magazine's Body Issue. Carano and Williams were two of the athletes featured in a book by Dana Rasmussen.
 Personal life
 Mixed martial arts record
|Professional record breakdown|
|8 matches||7 wins||1 loss|
|Loss||7-1||Cristiane Santos||TKO (punches)||Strikeforce: Carano vs. Cyborg||August 15, 2009||1||4:59||San Jose, California, United States||For the Women's Featherweight Championship|
|Win||7–0||Kelly Kobold||Decision (unanimous)||EliteXC: Heat||October 4, 2008||3||3:00||Sunrise, Florida, United States|
|Win||6–0||Kaitlin Young||TKO (doctor stoppage)||EliteXC: Primetime||May 31, 2008||2||3:00||Newark, New Jersey, United States||144 lb Catchweight|
|Win||5–0||Tonya Evinger||Submission (rear naked choke)||EliteXC: Uprising||September 15, 2007||1||2:53||Oahu, Hawaii, United States||141 lb|
|Win||4–0||Julie Kedzie||Decision (unanimous)||EliteXC: Destiny||February 10, 2007||3||3:00||Southaven, Mississippi, United States||EliteXC Debut, 141 lb|
|Win||3–0||Elaina Maxwell||Decision (unanimous)||Strikeforce: Triple Threat||December 8, 2006||3||2:00||San Jose, California, United States||Strikeforce Debut, 150 lb bout|
|Win||2–0||Rosi Sexton||KO (punch)||World Pro Fighting Championships 1||September 15, 2006||2||4:55||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States||138 lb Catchweight|
|Win||1–0||Leiticia Pestova||KO (punches and elbows)||World Extreme Fighting||June 10, 2006||1||0:38||Las Vegas, Nevada, United States||Fought at 135 lbs|
|2005||Ring Girls||Muay Thai Fighter/Herself||Video|
|2005||Countdown to Destiny||Herself||TV documentary|
|2006||Fight Girls||Herself||TV series|
|2008||American Gladiators||Crush||TV series|
|2008||American Gladiators Ultimate Workout||Crush||Video|
|2008||Command & Conquer: Red Alert 3||Natasha Volkova||Video Game|
|2008||Fatal Femmes Fighting: Asian Invasion||Herself||Video|
|2009||Blood and Bone||Verett||Film|
|2011||I Am Bruce Lee||Herself||TV documentary|
|2013||Fast and Furious 6||Riley||Film|
|2013||In the Blood||Ava||Film|
 See also
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- "Unified Women's Mixed Martial Arts Rankings". MMARising.com. Retrieved 2010-08-01.
- "Unified Women's Rankings". FighterGirls.com. Retrieved 2010-08-01.
- Iole, Kevin (28 May 2008). "Carano wants to be fighter first, star later". Yahoo Sports. Alt: . Retrieved 2008-08-01.
- "interview Gina Carano". mat-magazine.com. Retrieved 2008-09-16.[dead link]
- "Full Transcript Of Exclusive Gina Carano Interview". MMA News. 2007-01-31. Retrieved 2011-11-11.
- Sheehan, Jack (1 September 2007) "Don't let her good looks fool you: Stunning Gina Carano has a near-perfect record in mixed martial arts", Las Vegas Sun. Retrieved 2008-01-01.
- "The Official Site of Gina Carano". Yard barker. 2009-07-37. Retrieved 2013-03-12.
- "It takes two to tangle Las Vegas native’s desire to fight inspired top female MMA fighter to take up sport". Las Vegas Sun. 23 July 2009. Retrieved 2009-08-05.
- "Full Transcript Of Exclusive Gina Carano Interview".
- "World Pro Fighting – Las Vegas, September 15, 2006". WPFight.com. Retrieved 2007-09-16.
- "Le Wins on Cut, Southworth Takes Strikeforce Belt". SHERDOG.com. 2006-12-08. Retrieved 2010-05-05.
- "EXC live coverage from Southaven, MS". WrestlingObserver.com. Retrieved 2007-09-16.
- Sick Carano Off EliteXC Card (2008-05-17) Sherdog.com. Retrieved 2007-05-17.
- "Elite XC notes: Carano carries torch for sport". Yahoo! Sports. 2007-06-16. Retrieved 2009-08-09.
- Ariel Helwani (2008-05-28) Carano: 'I just didn't really want to stay out of the ring' Fox Sports'.' Retrieved 2008-05-29.
- "GinaCarano and Weight Cutting". BLOODYELBOW.com. 2007-09-26. Retrieved 2009-08-09.[dead link]
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- "164mph.com". 164mph.com. Retrieved 2010-11-12.
- ""EliteXC: Heat" weigh-in results". MMAJUNKIE.com. 2008-10-03. Retrieved 2009-08-09.
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- "GINA CARANO DEFEATS KOBOLD, REMAINS UNBEATEN". MMAWEEKLY.com. 2008-10-04. Retrieved 2009-08-09.
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- "Strikeforce completes deal to buy limited ProElite asset". CNN. 2009-02-04. Retrieved 2010-05-03.
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- "‘Cyborg’ Finishes Carano in First Round". SHERDOG.com. 2009-08-16. Retrieved 2010-02-10.
- "Strikeforce Hopes for Gina Carano Return in 2011, But No Discussions Yet". MMAWeekly.com. 2010-11-04. Retrieved 2010-11-05.
- Luke Thomas (2011-02-12). Strikeforce: Fedor Vs. Silva Results: Gina Carano Returns To Strikeforce. sbnation.com. Accessed 2010-02-15.
- "Dana White: Same Old Tune; Different Verse". Bleacher Report. 2008-08-21. Retrieved 2011-11-11.
- Guerrilla Fight (2011-05-09). "Gina Carano’s Real Opponent in Return to MMA: Dana White". Guerrilla Fight. Retrieved 2011-11-11.[dead link]
- "Carano Fails Medicals for June 18 Strikeforce". Sherdog.com. 7 June 2011.
- Marrocco, Steven (2011-06-07). "Although cleared by commission, Gina Carano's return date unknown, manager says". MMAjunkie.com. Retrieved 2011-11-11.
- "Ring Girls Review (2006)". Thespinningimage.co.uk. Retrieved 2010-11-12.
- "Muay Thai Ring Girls (UK) (DVD Details) - MyReviewer.com". Dvd.reviewer.co.uk. 2006-09-30. Retrieved 2010-11-12.
- "Gina Carano N Michael Jai White Kick ass in Blood and Bone". Archived from the original on 2008-01-29. Retrieved 2008-01-23.
- Gina Carano as Natasha in Red Alert 3. (May 30, 2008) IGN. Retrieved 2008-08-01.
- Fleming,Mike. "Soderbergh, Carano in "Knockout" pairing". Variety.
- "Gina Carano to Star in Major Film". Fightburger. 8 September 2009. Retrieved 2010-11-12.
- Aftab, Kaleem (2012-01-06). "Steven Soderbergh – 'It's always good to kill movie stars'". The Independent.
- Lemire, Christy (12 January 2012). "Review: Carano kicks butt in 'Haywire' film debut". The Boston Globe (Boston.com). Associated Press. Retrieved 2012-02-14.
- Kit, Borys (2012-02-13). "Berlin 2012: 'Haywire' Actress Gina Carano to Star in Another Action Movie (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2012-02-14.
- Kit, Borys (April 23, 2012). "'Haywire' Star Gina Carano in Talks to Join 'Fast & Furious 6' (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter (Prometheus Global Media). Archived from the original on April 23, 2012. Retrieved April 23, 2012.
- Sneider, Jeff (September 24, 2012). "Carano attaches to femme riff on 'Expendables'". Variety. Retrieved September 25, 2012.
- Gina Carano, Hottest Female Fighter[dead link] at MMA Chump
- Google trends – Gina Carano (2008-05-12) Google. Retrieved 2008-08-01.
- "Women – Yahoo! 2008 Year in Review". Yahoo!. Retrieved 2009-04-08.
- "Press | ActionFest — The Film Festival With a Body Count". Actionfest.com. Retrieved 2012-04-08.
- "ESPN Body Issue Pictures- Serena Williams / Gina Carano". Beautytips4her.com. 2009-10-07. Retrieved 2011-11-11.
- "He's MY (Super)man: Gina Carano gazes adoringly at beau Henry Cavill as pair touch down in London ahead of BAFTA awards. Daily Mail. Retrieved March 12, 2013
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