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Gina Carano vs. Ronda Rousey targeted for UFC 181 in December

According to a July 20 report from the International Business Times, the long-awaited fight between Gina Carano and UFC bantamweight champ Ronda Rousey is likely to take place at UFC 181 in December. UFC 181, which goes down Dec. 6 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, doesn't yet have any official matches on the card, but UFC President Dana White hinted that Carano vs. Rousey could headline.

Gina Carano is likely to fight Ronda Rousey at UFC 181
Gina Carano is likely to fight Ronda Rousey at UFC 181
Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

During this weekend's UFC Fight Night post-fight media scrum in Dublin, White said Carano would get a title shot against Rousey in December. He made sure to mention that Carano vs. Rousey would not be taking place on the UFC 182 card slated for Jan. 3 of the new year. White says he'll be meeting with Carano this week to try to hammer out a deal.

No word yet from Carano or the UFC on how much money the former Strikeforce star is looking for. To get her out of retirement, it's likely going to take a lot of cash. However, it will be worth it for the UFC to pay her whatever she's asking for. Let's face it: Carano vs. Rousey is the fight that fans want to see. Carano is still a superstar, even though she hasn't fought in five years.

As for Rousey, she's arguably the biggest star in the UFC today. Would Rousey vs. Carano be a squash match ending in the star judoka's favor? Probably, but Rousey doesn't have anyone else to fight against. Rousey's past two challengers -- Alexis Davis and Sara McMann -- lasted less than a round each. Carano can't do much worse than Davis and McMann, so the UFC might as well make the fight happen.

Since it's unlikely Carano will be able to last more than a round with the champ, the UFC would be smart to stack the main card with several other must-see fights. Just in case Rousey vs. Carano is a bust, the UFC could at least make up for it by having a few more decent fights on the UFC 181 main card. Carano hasn't yet confirmed if she plans to come back for more than one fight, or if she's just interested in a title fight against Rousey.

At present time, Rousey is recovering from the broken hand she suffered in her fight against Alexis Davis. As for Carano, she continues to train in MMA even though she hasn't fought in years. More details will emerge in the days ahead about the potential Carano vs. Rousey fight.