(‘I don’t want to freak you out or anything, Brett. But having you here in my arms, it just feels right, doesn’t it?’ Photo courtesy of SI.com)
After a brief layoff for scheduled maintenance to its supercomputer, the Potato Index is back to sort through the winners and losers of Saturday night’s Strikeforce event on CBS with its arbitrary numerical rankings system. Huzzah!
Fedor Emelianenko +86
It’s hard to get a big boost in the Index when you’re a 5-1 favorite going into the fight, but he delivered with another right hand murderball, and even gave the casual fans a little blood for their trouble. But were the ratings good enough to get CBS’s attention?
Brett Rogers +4
So he didn’t shock the world. Honestly, who expected him to? He still landed some good shots and took a couple as well, but the biggest positive for him is how he performed on the mat. He’s still got some improvements to make, but he showed that he’s not all hype and a trendy haircut.
Jake Shields +67
Give him credit for sticking to his game plan and doing exactly what he wanted to, but it didn’t make for a thrilling fight. ‘Methodical’ and ‘efficient’ are not adjectives typically used to describe fan favorites, but they’re fitting for Shields. If Strikeforce ever wants to make a main eventer out of him, they need a big name opponent to help with the hype.
“Mayhem” Miller -11
He may have been within a few seconds of submitting Shields at one point, but for most of the fight he played his opponent’s game and paid for it with a decision loss. Will his popularity take a hit for it? Almost certainly not. But he sure could use a high profile win right about now to remind people that he’s got more in his bag of tricks than just a bunch of zany antics.
Gegard Mousasi +54
A slow start made resulted in a delayed, though inevitable beatdown for Sokoudjou. Whether it did anything to further boost his profile among American viewers is doubtful. What “Sweet Sassy” really needs is an opponent in the light heavyweight top ten. Too bad they’re all in the UFC.
Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou -49
Remember when Sokoudjou was the hot prospect who came out of nowhere to KO Arona and Nogueira? Feels like ages ago now. Once again he looks decent for the first three minutes, but as the fight keeps going he stops believing. Best of luck in the Super Hulk. We can think of no better place for you right now.
Fabricio Werdum +62
He didn’t dazzle, but at least he won, as did all the odds-on favorites on the televised card. Calling for a fight with Fedor afterwards may be fashionable, though we’re not sure how competitive it would be. Give us Fedor vs. Overeem first, and let Werdum prove himself against Brett Rogers in the meantime.
CBS announcing team +3
Gus Johnson is mostly dead weight, Mauro Ranallo has thankfully learned to tone down his usual schtick just a bit, and Shamrock offers some actual insight when the camera’s not on him long enough for us to be distracted by his braces. But why put Pat Miletich on the ShoMMA JV team? When it comes to technical analysis that the average fan can still digest, he’s adept enough to deserve the network job.
They avoided major disasters in their CBS show, but mid-level production values, a main event that ends in the second round and still runs long, plus the decision to cut the Miller-Davis fight entirely make them seem like they still have a ways to go to be a real rival to the UFC.