Thursday, August 13, 2009

Women's M.M.A. On The Rise?

The WNBA and women's soccer had their moments in the sun, but never seemed to sustain their popularity for any length of time. Women’s golf has had a very difficult time, despite Annika Sorenstam and others that were appealing to the male eye doing their best to propel the sport. Even women's hockey has gotten some attention - mostly due to Cammie Granato and the U.S. Women's Olympic Hockey team and their games earlier this decade against Canada. Now women’s mixed martial arts is looking to enter the mainstream and seems to be getting some worthwhile attention. This Saturday night Gina Carano faces Cristiane “Cyborg” Santos in the main event of Strikeforce’s Showtime event to determine the first women's m.m.a. champion. Former five-time UFC heavyweight champ Randy Couture is training Carano.

Yahoo! Sports' Kevin Iole writes here that Carano has women's m.m.a. on her shoulders.

He makes some interesting points. Women's sports, in general, gets snickered at and I think it will take more than one female star for women's m.m.a. to flourish, but if a major network like NBC gets behind it, then there is a possibility. But I think the growth potential is limited. I think the problem is there are only so many hours in a week and women’s m.m.a. will have a tough time vying for even a small piece of the “entertainment pie.” Still, I root for the underdog and hope that mixed martial arts for women finds its niche.

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