EliteXC: Destiny (February/10/2007)
To say that this fight was important to the rise of women in mixed martial arts would be an understatement. This night was the first time showtime ever featured a fight with female competitors. This match was scheduled as the second fight of the main card. The bout was set for three 3 minute rounds, as it was believed at the time that a woman fighting 5 minute rounds was too dangerous.
So for the next 9 minutes, Gina Carano and Julie Kedzie put on a show. While Carano proved to have better striking, Kedzie proved how tough women can be. She was dropped from a big right hand at the end of the second round, but was able to weather the storm and started the following round with a strong takedown to finally bring the fight into her game. Carano was able to defend the submission attempts and continued to control the fight before attempting a takedown of her own at the sound of the bell. Both fighters graciously embraced one another, stood up, and naturally lifted each other’s arms to celebrate the victory for women’s mixed martial arts.(Pictured above)
The display of technical skill by Carano mixed with the heart & resilience of Kedzie showed that WMMA was here to stay. After the event, the fight received Fight of the Night honors. Carano went on to become the face of WMMA, winning her next 3 fights until retiring in 2009 following a loss to Cris Cyborg. Kedzie continued her MMA career, stacking up an 8-5 record following her fight against Gina. She is set to make her UFC debut July 27th against fellow contender Germaine De Randamie.
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