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Conor McGregor offers ‘The Mandalorian’ star Gina Carano a fight

Before Ronda Rousey, there was Gina Carano.

The original ‘face of Women’s MMA’ fought professionally in MMA just 7 times between 2006 and 2009, but she made a major mark on the sport and became one of its biggest stars. At a time when women fighting in mixed martial arts was still considered a sideshow, she brought a spotlight and legitimacy that paved the road for future females to follow.

Carano left the sport following a first round knockout loss to Cris Cyborg, turning her attention to Hollywood. A starring role in the Steven Soderbergh movie Haywire earned accolades for its fighting scenes, if not for Gina’s acting chops. But a few years of seasoning and several more gigs later and Carano reappeared in theaters as a part of the blockbuster superhero movie Deadpool 2. That led to an even bigger role in The Mandalorian, the Star Wars TV show that’s driving subscriptions for Disney’s new Disney+ streaming service.

To mark the occasion, ESPN (a subsidiary of Disney, like everything else these days) has Carano appearing on Ariel Helwani’s MMA Show. The announcement attracted a lot of attention from fans, including one Conor McGregor.

While McGregor Productions isn’t a real thing, Conor McGregor Sports & Entertainment is ... that’s the company name behind the Irish star’s ‘Conor McGregor: Notorious’ documentary detailing his rise from the minor leagues to UFC double champ. According to McGregor, a second film is in the works details his big money boxing bout with Floyd Mayweather. Who knows what project Conor is thinking about for McGregor Productions, but it’s clear what he’s implying regarding McGregor Promotions.

McGregor Promotions is Conor’s fight company, which got equal billing alongside the UFC and Mayweather Promotions for the Mayweather vs. McGregor fight. McGregor often hypes his promotion company up, usually when trying to remind the UFC he’s not just another fighter on the roster to be pushed into a co-main event slot.

As for Gina Carano, would she ever fight again? The last credible near-comeback she almost made was at the height of Ronda Rousey’s reign. The UFC put a big money offer in front of the former Strikeforce champion in 2014 but Carano turned it down. That doesn’t mean she’ll never return, though. Back in February of 2018 Gina said more fights were still possible.

“I don’t think there’s a day that goes by that I’m not on the treadmill, and I’m not punching and kicking someone in my head,” Carano told the Top Turtle podcast (via The Mac Life). “I worked with some of those girls at a point. I fought Cris. I work with some of those girls now. I still train.”

According to the stunt team on The Mandalorian, Carano still kicks like a mule, too.

”I could never come back and fight with my priorities not set,” she admitted. “I could never come back for the money or I could never do it for the attention. I would really have to do it for myself and to see if I wanted it and had it in me to push myself there again. That’d be the only reason I’d ever want to do that again.”

With The Mandalorian already looking like it’s going to be one of the biggest TV events since Game of Thrones, we think it’d take the right priorities and a McGregor amount of money. Fortunately, Conor understands that serious star power deserves serious star money.

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