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Strikeforce Hasn’t Spoken to CBS Since Nashville Brawl

(Praying works better if you bow your head and close your eyes, Scott)

According to Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker, his promotion has not been in touch with broadcast partner CBS since the post-fight brawl that occurred at the tail end of the Strikeforce: Nashville event April 17.

Now, I’m no business expert, but I have some management and PR experience and one thing I’m pretty sure that is a paramount component to every successful business relationship is open two-way communication. If it were me, I would have been on the phone with CBS that Monday to set up a debriefing to discuss the incident, what went wrong and how we should move forward. 
Instead, it seems that Strikeforce is taking the don’t ask don’t tell, head in the sand technique, which likely won’t end well as time passes and CBS starts to wonder what the hell is going on.

In an interview with MMAJunkie, Coker said that he isn’t concerned that the growing amount of time the two sides remain silent is any indication that CBS likely won’t pick up the option to broadcast more Strikeforce events.

"It’s something that we haven’t had a conversation with them yet, but probably after this St. Louis fight we’ll sit down with them and have that conversation. This is the same course as the last show. After the Fedor Emelianenko fight in November, it wasn’t like we had our April date right afterward. They have to go back and analyze and know all the data and the sales, and then we have a meeting. But our meeting for the April fight wasn’t until January, I believe. This is the same process we went through last time. This is a normal course of business. Hopefully, we’ll have a great fall date and we’ll have some more great fights on CBS."

Let me get this straight; It’s normal for a business partner to avoid the other for a month or so after an embarrassing incident that took place (that required a large amount of crisis control that never happened), effectively driving a wedge between the two sides?  I’d be interested to hear what other business owners have to say about this claim. 

Regardless of whether or not the two sides can come to terms to have future events on CBS, the network needs to shoulder some of the blame. Someone from CBS made the decision to pan out on the fracas to give viewers a bird’s eye view of Team Cesar Gracie laying a beating on Jason Miller, rather than going to commercial. A simple two-minute tape delay would have prevented the masses from knowing the incident even took place until they read second and third hand accounts about it on MMA news sites and message boards the following day. Even then, the casual fan or curious virgin MMA viewer that watched the CBS show would not likely have heard about the brawl, except as a footnote on a mainstream sports site or in a newspaper’s sports section.

Hopefully, CBS realizes their own part in broadcasting the incident and they can move forward. MMA on network television is a good thing, as long as it isn’t presented like it’s Saturday Night’s Main Event. Strikeforce’s Showtime deal is only a little over one year old and their events have only been on CBS since last April. With so much potential, it would be a shame if they followed the same doomed path as their predecessor, EliteXC.

Coker’s focus on Strikeforce’s other broadcast outlet seems to belie his feigned confidence that CBS could very well host another show sometime down the road.

"To have a relationship with Showtime and CBS, and to do as many fights as we do on Showtime, think about the value MMA fans are getting with Showtime. They can watch not only great MMA, but look at the boxing Showtime has had and the great original programming they have. It’s a great value, and a guy can just sit at home and watch MMA on Showtime for free. It’s a great value to MMA fans, and it’s a privilege and an honor for us to be able to host these fights. If it wasn’t for Showtime, we would not be doing the quality of fights that we’re putting together today. (As for CBS), it remains to be seen. I think that it’s going to be a situation where it’s really up to CBS. We’re hopeful that it will happen again."

Keep saying your prayers, Scott. I hope they’re answered.

Cagepotato Comments

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CrackMasterVanSnap- May 14, 2010 at 2:59 pm
The last time I had and embarrassing incident with a business partner, I never talked to them again. Probably because I was fired for having sex on her desk. Was that wrong?

macreadysshack- May 14, 2010 at 2:13 pm
PS Has anybody here actually tried one of those exfoliating masks? I did an avocado one from Fred Meyers. It felt crazy - pulling my facial skin all tight. After I washed it off, it was like my pores could fucking BREATHE!

macreadysshack- May 14, 2010 at 2:06 pm
+1 @ dranokills
dranokills- May 14, 2010 at 1:58 pm
mr LOLface Says:
Fri, 05/14/2010 - 19:12
really? we're suggesting censorship and time delays because... America isn't pussified enough already, and we didn't just see 3 hours of beating faces in the first place?

in the grand scheme of things, this little bullshit side show won't even be a footnote in the world of mma... honest injin.

remember all those brawls in the boxing ring and at the weigh-ins in the 80s?... yeah. kinda. not so much. in a vague way. or basketball brawls.. football field storms... hockey fights.


stop being vaginas and wipe the exfoliating mask from your face, you look like queers.

you must be new, we have already debunked the whole "what about other sports where stupid shit happens all the time" theory.
Listen new person this is MMA ,we are trying to get noticed in world full of established sports where overpaid pampered asshole rule. MMA in my opinion should be above the stupidity we have seen from the strikeFARCE brawling,and the douchebaggary of daley.
So you see it's not about being a bunch of vagina's , it's about being a smarter more respectful sport with some integrity...something other sports dont have anymore especially cocksucking boxing that I hate now.
This ain't wrasslin', I expect better. If you feel otherwise perhaps this isn't the sport for you.
Mr_Misanthropy- May 14, 2010 at 1:22 pm
Personally, I'm more pissed about the stupid EliteXC decisions Strikeforce makes as matchups. Their open contracts seem like they might as well be open invitations to come fight for a bunch of money if you feel like it and you don't have any prior engagements. Their matchmaking is senseless and seems overly engineered to deliver pre-determined results. It would be nice if they took the stable of fighters they have and tried to build a consistent title picture, but they aren't even consistent with their shows. When was the last Challengers? They had like five in a row last fall, one was one day before one of their main events. Everything they do has inept written all over it. I'm just waiting for them to partner with Donald Trump.
eyeheartmma- May 14, 2010 at 1:02 pm
I wouldn't mind either way....
But IF Strikeforce did fold.....it would add depth to the talent pool in the UFC. I would love to see a handfull of SF guys in the UFC.
pooch- May 14, 2010 at 12:46 pm
If CBS hasn't canned strikeforce already they are still interested. I think CBS loved the melee but by keeping a low profile keeps everybody guessing.Networks act quickly when they are going to fire or get rid of programming. Much like television series one day they are on the next they are no where to be seen because they were cancelled. Actors on the shows sometimes don't even know they are cancelled until they try and come on the lot. IMO CBS is fine and they are waiting for a Fedor Fight because we will tune in to watch Fedor fight any tomato can.
aaronb- May 14, 2010 at 12:19 pm
Subo is the guy who ruined Fightlinker.
Sloppy- May 14, 2010 at 11:36 am
John Gosselin has really let himself go since the divorce!
macreadysshack- May 14, 2010 at 11:12 am
@aaronb lol - who's Subo?
831 Father- May 14, 2010 at 10:57 am
My grandmother is more threatening than Coker. No wonder people walk all over him.

Oh, and aaronb, he's a shitty businessman who makes retarded decisions. This isn't a knock on Strikeforce, just their CEO.
aaronb- May 14, 2010 at 10:48 am
The brawl is such a non-story. This whole narrative needs to go away and never be used as a talking point again.

The UFC champions a "reality" show where people put jizzum in each others food. Yet Strikeforce is somehow bush league because a shoving match happens in a cage after an MMA bout?

Double standard sucks almost as much as anything Subo writes.
Richard Fitzentite- May 14, 2010 at 10:22 am
Does no one know how to run a quality show outside of the UFC? Nick Diaz started a fight in a hospital emergency room after he fought in the UFC.....keep an eye on him.

The real dificulty in these CBS shows is what Dana White claims is the sticking points in most of his negotiations with networks. They want to run the actual production and he is worried they will fuck it up. I wonder why?

Nobody has commented on why the "brawl" took place anyway. Who let Mayhem in there? Why was the ring litterally full of people. Take a look at UFC's octagon, post fight. You have fighters, corner men, commisioners, an announcer, camera guy and the owners. When they bring in a guy to hype a fight it is orchestrated and the fighters know the deal.

CBS is to blame more than Stikeforce.

Side note.....showtime is free? Thanks for showing that your head is litterally up your fat ass Scott Coker.
macreadysshack- May 14, 2010 at 10:02 am
Yeah, I mean Strikeforce doesn't SUCK but they have a long way to go. They don't seem to be doing what they need to do to improve things, either. They need to make the boo boo list every show, fix what went wrong and talk to whomever it concerns until they get that show tight. Right now it's looser than Nick Ring's . . . knee.
steampunk22- May 14, 2010 at 9:43 am
Doesn't change the fact that Strikeforce makes ridiculous decisions within their organization. Case in point the upcoming Rogers/Overeem Heavyweight title fight. That Rogers got after he lost. Bizarre, really.

All the network deals and free-mma spin that Coker can put on it, doesn't make it a top tier promotion when they make ass backwards decisions like that. I haven't even heard a good explanation of WHY yet.

That being said I will still watch Fedor's fights, wherever they happen.
jimbonics- May 14, 2010 at 9:30 am
Mike Russell- May 14, 2010 at 9:29 am
 Thanks, budsellers. Typo on my part.
budsellers- May 14, 2010 at 9:28 am
"Strikeforce is only a little over one year old and their events have only been on CBS since last April."

strikeforce has been putting on shows for much longer than a year. their hw champ has never defended the belt he won 2.5 years ago. in fact, that poser who put kurt angle in an unauthorized key lock back in 2004(wwe) was fighting for strikeforce thaat same year.

perhaps it is simply a typo and you meant to type that strikeforce's relationship with showtime is a little over a year old.
Promise of Stress- May 14, 2010 at 9:21 am
@ Rex

Bum Fights?
mr LOLface- May 14, 2010 at 9:12 am
really? we're suggesting censorship and time delays because... America isn't pussified enough already, and we didn't just see 3 hours of beating faces in the first place?

in the grand scheme of things, this little bullshit side show won't even be a footnote in the world of mma... honest injin.

remember all those brawls in the boxing ring and at the weigh-ins in the 80s?... yeah. kinda. not so much. in a vague way. or basketball brawls.. football field storms... hockey fights.


stop being vaginas and wipe the exfoliating mask from your face, you look like queers.
ReX13- May 14, 2010 at 9:06 am
I really hope that this weekend's event goes off well, and all the fights are epic and technical and breathtakingly awesome. I really do. I hope CBS comes to the table and says, "Scott, m'man! How they hangin? Listen, let's thrash out this three year deal, ok? By the way, we're infusing you with cash so you can continue to go after and pay for top talent."

Failing that, though, CBS may be interested in this little promotion that's been putting on some really good shows on a relatively small budget. Can't remember the name right now, but it comes on when CSI is on...
Promise of Stress- May 14, 2010 at 8:56 am
It's no big deal, this is MMA this kind of thing happens all the time. There's a lot of testosterone in the cage.
TheMadness- May 14, 2010 at 8:55 am
I just realized that Scott Coker looks like a grouper.
Kimbos Bread- May 14, 2010 at 8:53 am
CBS would be losing money and business if they dropped Strikeforce for good. Shit happens people. Move on.
Viva Hate- May 14, 2010 at 8:45 am
Scott would bow his head but the large amount of fat that has accumulated below the chin region makes it physically impossible. He was able to bow his head once but nearly suffocated himself, there have been no attempts since.

I do like the move by Scott, if you ignore someone long enough after something embarrassing they are bound to forget. In two or three years just call back up, hey buddy, how ya been? Pretend like there was never a ruckus on national televison.