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Strange Twist in Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix Format: Overeem’s Belt Will NOT Be Up For Grabs During the Tournament

(The winner of the tournament will take home a case of Rockstar Energy Drink and one of each item from the summer collection of Gus Johnson’s new clothing line.)

Scott Coker made a somewhat surprising announcement today during the promotion’s conference call ahead of its heavyweight grand prix that left a few on the call scratching their heads.

According to the Strikeforce president, the first round bouts of the tournament will consist of three rounds, meaning that the Overeem-Werdum bout will not be a title fight. In fact, Coker went on to explain that only the tournament final will be five rounds, but even if Alistair is one of the contestants of that match, it will be a non-title affair.

Coker, who didn’t say what the prize for winning the tournament would be, blamed the change in the planned format on the various host city commissions who he says refused to sanction five-round non-title bouts. According to Coker, "It wouldn’t have been fair to make some of the guys fight five rounds and the others only fight three," which is why they decided to put the belt on the shelf until the tournament is over.

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fatbellyfrank- January 13, 2011 at 10:46 pm
When I first heard about this I thought cool, hold it over a long weekend and really give SF a point of difference, injuries and all sorts would have played a part, but thats a Grand prix in my eyes, guaran-fucken-tee the strap for the winner, I know people will say its to hard on the fighters, but you win and all your fights go the distance, you'll be fighting for a total of 55 minutes over a three day period, I don't think thats to much of stretch for professional athletes. The way the tourney is now structured its the Bellator H/W tourney with a different logo, ho hum, and as CCman ( and others) has pointed out above, it'll all fall to shit before our very eyes.

Ya couldda been a contender Coker, but ya never put ya balls all da way out didya
fatbellyfrank- January 13, 2011 at 10:34 pm
ccman Says:
Fri, 01/14/2011 - 11:52
ok ok ok..... allow me to be the voice of reason.
Mate, love your work, enjoy your comments but you suggesting your the voice of reason is a bit like me sayin I'm gonna comment without juvenile humour, or Drano posting a comment that say's "Lets not inflame the situation" ( though he has been remarkably concilliatory lately, everything OK Drano?)

ccman- January 13, 2011 at 5:52 pm
ok ok ok..... allow me to be the voice of reason.

1. overeem is the second most marketable name on the roster. he is not staying in strikeforce, unless he can continue to avoid defending his belt. his contract extension was based solely on him not having to put his precious belt he won off a loser, and only once in 3 years defended over a loser, not be in jeopardy. werdum can beat him and yet he is still champ. huh?
2. Fedor has a contract extension based on cross promotion and getting more than others who actually either beat him or have the belt, before he runs into politics in a country none of you will ever visit and will be invaded next year anyway.
3. werdum has a whole career based off beating a worn out, shadow of self Fedor who just wanted a check as fast as possible. win or lose, pay me. is not a threat unless someone else jumps into his guard and offers their arm as a sacrifice to whatever god orthodox worship, either way the second he realizes the belts off the table will train like the werdum we are used too.
4. Barnett will continue to be the talent that might not exist without chemical support. every promotion has dropped him for being a fucktard fat ass who needs a chemist to make him great. if you think this will change you are dumb. Barnett does not miss real MMA in Japan for no reason, he misses the worst testing since ancient greece.
5. AA will get knocked out by the ringside ref applying vasaline.
6. Rogers will go for his patent 'toss the r rated tire' move and get caught
7. Silva will be shot by hunters thinking they saw a monkey stealing their moose in the pacific northwest, or their will not be a lightning storm the night before so noone will get to scream 'ITS ALIVE'.
8. Kharitonov will be mistaken for carrot top and be forced to do comedy in ceasars where his joke on his little suitcase will be beaten over his head for doing the 'this is russian suitcase which carry american value in it, da?!?" joke.

seriously, how the fuck is this news since even the writers know this will fall apart, no way in hell does this actually finish with the same fighters involved, and removing the belt makes it all a farce anyway? let Overeem enjoy his K-1 sucess until someone else is healthy, let him sit in his 'horsemeat' friendly japan, and lets look at something worth reading.
vengful1- January 13, 2011 at 5:18 pm
It only makes sense to have a tournament champion when you have the tourney in 1 day (or at least within a few days). If it's spread out over 12 months or whatever and it's your best HW fighters fighting each other, it's basically the same as having guys trying to win so they can move up the ranks (except for Rodgers who lost his way up the ranks). The only difference is you are not the heavyweight champ at the end. So....yeah. So if you win your way to the finals and happen to beat Overeem, tough shit. I guess you get to fight him again in 3 years? I dunno.
Morgan Chiller- January 13, 2011 at 4:41 pm
@ RearNakedSpoon -
it prolly wouldn't be that good a fight if he had to fight his brother for the belt, although I don't think his brother would make it past the first round of the tourney anyway...replace Overeem on the bracket with Todd Duffee, have him fight Verdum, winner faces Fedor or Bigfoot to advance to the finals, winner of the whole tourney is the "Grand Prix Champ" and the #1 contender for Overeem's belt.
Stash- January 13, 2011 at 4:07 pm
Did anyone actually read that last paragraph out loud?
fatbellyfrank- January 13, 2011 at 3:56 pm
Pure genius from Coker, basically he's just announced that he's gonna get the SF heavyweights fighting over the next 12 months, called it a Grand Prix Tourney and then announced it during a slow news period in the MMA world so everybody's talkin bout it, how do you feel about Coker's brilliant idea Bjorn Rebney?
fatbellyfrank- January 13, 2011 at 3:45 pm
@ Curtis, you found jake shields in a pawn shop!! c'mon someone take the poor bastard home
budsellers- January 13, 2011 at 2:15 pm
if the titleholder is not defending his belt in each bout, the titleholder should be held from the tourney. in other words, werdum and overeem should fight seperately and the grand prix winner should get a trophy and a potential shot at the winner of overeem vs werdum.

i did not read every comment, i assume that i am joining the chorus of others who think it is a waste of time to see the champ fight in a 3 round fight.
ccman- January 13, 2011 at 2:13 pm
And. Now for something completely different:

This means at best.... overeem will defend the belt once in 4 years. Seriously, he found a way to fight and get paid and risk NOTHING. Fedor got to hand pickhis opponent, they stacked one side on purpoe, barnett can't fight in a regulated state, normal grand prixs are both random or seeded draw and involve multiple fights in a night, and somehow some of you STILL want to hate the ufc for being big and organized. It crowd 4th season tshirt joke "if you like it I have to hate it"

Just noting
Curtis- January 13, 2011 at 2:09 pm
I found Overeem's belt, it is at the Gold and Silver Pawn Shop Las Vegas Nevada, right next to Jake Shields...
ccman- January 13, 2011 at 2:04 pm
@ el famous.

I had "all interest destroyed by Thursday

Parlayed into horses become extinct so overoid goes with shrunken nutz explaination

Into barnett can only get licensed in nigeria and we have to help a prince move his fortune to free up an arena.
El Guapo- January 13, 2011 at 1:21 pm
Paging Mr. Bean, paging Mister Butter, Bean. Your title shot is waiting, Mr. Bean.

And Goog, that's one too many whoas. You shoulda went the Joey from Blossom route... "Whoa!"
Richard Fitzentite- January 13, 2011 at 1:11 pm
Doesn't make any sense, if you say this..."refused to sanction five-round non-title bouts" then how can you say this..."Coker went on to explain that only the tournament final will be five rounds,but even if Alistair is one of the contestants of that match, it will be a non-title affair".

Also, had no idea any sanctioning body gave a shit that the winner's next opponent is pre-determined.
Goog- January 13, 2011 at 12:52 pm
Whoa... whoa... whoa... WHOA... whoa... whoa... whoa... WHOA... WHOA... whoa... whoa...


This isn't my Batman glass.
The_Dead_Cow- January 13, 2011 at 12:24 pm
This is all just an elaborate hoax by Scott Coker to get Overeem to fight in Strikeforce............power of the brackets!!!!

Seems like if you wanted to see 2-4 particular fighters in the finals, you would have them on opposite ends of the brackets. I don't know why were even talking about it, its not gonna happen.
Lysol- January 13, 2011 at 12:15 pm
@ El Famous Burrito

Very risky parlay bet.

Mine also starts with "Fouled up by Thursday", followed by "M-1 Global pulls Fedor from the tournament until Scott Coker agrees to give them 200% of the tournament profits", "Silva dominates Griggs before accepting a contract with the UFC" and "Overeem breaks his hand in a K-1 fight".
Mike Russell- January 13, 2011 at 12:11 pm
 Rwilson...I have a feeling if one of the favorites is close to losing, Coker will send Lashley sprinting out with a chair to make sure the tournament proceeds as planned.
halfbreed23- January 13, 2011 at 12:07 pm
It's not so strange. In fact, it's very similar to Japan's Grand Prix events where there is a Tournament Champion then a Weight class Champion.

How does this Grand Prix compare to the Grand Prix events UFC puts on?
RwilsonR- January 13, 2011 at 12:04 pm
@ MRuss - a 'mystery opponent'? Will Bobby Lashley just appear randomly in between tournament brackets, like Smoke or Noob Saibot?
RearNakedSpoon- January 13, 2011 at 11:57 am
@Morgan Chiller

Mega idea but only if they can promise Overeem vs Overeem will happen if thats the result. Does he have any issue with fighting against people on his team?
Mike Russell- January 13, 2011 at 11:54 am
Apparently Bobby Lashley might be a mystery opponent in the tourney as well...
Morgan Chiller- January 13, 2011 at 11:44 am
Everytime I think they have a good thing going...Coker pulls the rug out, WTF, no title involved in the tourney whatsoever? They oughta make it a tourney to see who is the #1 contender and have the winner fight Overeem, they're dumb.
RwilsonR- January 13, 2011 at 11:43 am
I'm scratching my head as to why anyone thinks this is a tournament? It is simply a title fight (well... not anymore, I guess), followed up by contenders matches leading to more title fights (again... not anymore) and scattered throughout several events over the course of 10-12 months. Seems like this is how a normal division operates. The only reason we see it as a tournament, other than that Coker says it is, is that we will finally see SF heavyweights fight with reasonable frequency (if this happens as planned... but really, what could go wrong?).
uzitotinbaby- January 13, 2011 at 11:37 am
Brett Rogers got a shot at the belt after LOSING a fight. Alistair has only defended it once in three years, while logging in like eithteen MMA/kickboxing fights elsewhere. Let's not fuck around, the Strikeforce heavyweight belt isn't all that legit to begin with. The tournament is still awesome.