During the build up for Gina Carano’s fight against Christiane “Cyborg” Santos last night in San Jose, Carano’s manager claimed that they had turned down “multiple offers” from Playboy to have Carano do a spread for the magazine, saying that “it never even reached to a point where we would talk about money.” Umm, about that…after Carano was stopped by Santos at the end of the first round, her manager might want to place a call to Hugh Hefner to see if that offer still stands.
And when I say that she was stopped “at the end of the first round” I mean that literally - as in “with one second left,” a fact that left most of the crowd wanting more. And with good reason: for 4:59, they put on an entertaining slugfest that had more thrills than the last UFC card. But as you can see in the video after the jump, it was Santos’ ability to throw punches in bunches that was the difference in the fight:
Conventional wisdom would say that Carano’s career both as a fighter and as a crossover star took a major hit after suffering her first loss. But I’m not so sure that’s the case: nothing endears a fighter to the public more than the “comeback” story following a loss. People want to see a fighter go on the path the dememption and eventually get revenge against the person who handed their their defeat.
As for Santos: she’s not Carano: the only magazine that would be calling her asking for a cover shoot would be muscle magazines and not Playboy or Maxim. But that doesn’t mean she can’t sell tickets, just on the basis of being an incredible fighter - think a Brazilian version of Ivan Drago. It will be interesting to see how her career progresses in the next few fights until the inevitable big money rematch with Carano happens.
At least Santos has a sense of humor, or someone in her camp does: they called the Strikeforce promoter hours before the fight and told him they would have to cancel the fight because she was pregnant. Which turned out to be a joke, but I’m sure one that the Strikeforce team didn’t think was all that funny.