With just one second left in the first round, Cristiane “Cyborg” Santos defeated the so-called “face of women’s MMA” Gina “Conviction” Carano Saturday night at the HP Pavilion in San Jose, Calif. to become the very first Strikeforce 145 lbs. female champion.
Carano tried to hang tough with the Brazilian bomber but the power of Santos proved to be too much for the pretty Muay Thai striker. Santos overwhelmed Carano every time she put hands on her, causing “Conviction” to cover up and go into defense mode.
Carano did find herself in advantageous positions a couple of times during the bout. Santos went for a takedown but Carano ended up on top of Santos. Surprisingly, instead of trying any ground and pound techniques, Carano chose to stand and let her opponent up. Carano clearly thought her advantage would be on the feet.
Carano may have more technically sound striking, but the power of Santos far outweighs any technical deficiency she may or may not have. It is probably safe to say Gina Carano has never been hit as hard by a woman as she was tonight.
As the five-minute first round came to a close, Santos took Carano to the ground, postured up and pounded on her until the referee was forced to intervene. There was no complaint of an early stoppage here, and it took Carano a few moments to get up from the canvas.
The fight ended pretty much like many thought it would, with Santos the winner. However, it was probably over a little faster than most anticipated. Now Strikeforce is faced with the unique challenge of finding females who are not only willing, but worthy to get in the cage with Cyborg.
By: Jack Bratcher