Thursday, June 25, 2009

Gina Carano Doesn't Exist in the East Bay Express

Last week the East Bay Express, based in Berkeley, California, ran a cover story on female mixed martial arts in the area. You can read it at

Focusing on a particular local trainer, it was an OK-enough article, except for this glaring statement:

"But will there be a place for these fighters to compete? Since 2007, two of the leading companies holding women’s MMA fights have folded. Fatal Femmes Fighting has spent the year reorganizing, bowed by the economic realities where there aren’t many people willing to pay $25 to see an all-women’s card. Sherdog’s Hunt thinks that women’s mixed martial arts is at the same point as the men’s sport was seven or eight years ago. 'There’s a handful of really good athletes that know the sport, but there’s not enough opportunities,' Hunt says."

What the Express doesn’t add is that on August 15, at the HP Pavilion in San Jose — 50 miles from Berkeley — Strikeforce is presenting the first-ever televised MMA card (on Showtime) headlined by a women’s match: Gina “Conviction” Carano vs. Cristiane “Cyborg” Santos.

A story on women’s MMA that doesn’t even mention Gina Carano, a crossover glamour girl who also boasts world-class legitimacy in both Muay Thai, a specialized strike sport, and MMA is a little like breaking down women in auto racing without a reference to Danica Patrick.

I sent a nice note to the Express, which apparently has decided not to tap out to the obvious omission.

The Express snidely covered the launch of my first book, Wrestling Babylon. If the paper responds similarly to the publication of my upcoming Chris & Nancy: The True Story of the Benoit Murder-Suicide and Pro Wrestling’s Cocktail of Death, y’all will know why.

Irv Muchnick

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