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Strikeforce Isn’t Rushing to Name New Champions (And That’s Totally Fine)

Great belt, or the greatest belt? PicProps:  AnnieSHOSports/Twitter

After another fun night of heavyweight action, the Strikeforce Grand Prix finals are set: Josh Barnett and Daniel Cormier will fight to be recognized as the best heavyweight in the world, except for those guys in the UFC. Or the guys that have left Strikeforce in the past few months. Whatever.

Anywho, you may have seen pictures of the GP championship belt that showed up last week, and heard that Coker and company are still lukewarm about the idea of calling the GP winner the Strikeforce champion. We thought that didn’t really make sense, and Josh Barnett agrees. At the Strikeforce press conference Saturday night, Barnett tried to twist Coker’s arm a bit, asking: “Why don’t we sweeten the pot?” Barnett asked. “Why don’t we put that title on the line between me and Cormier?”

Coker, bless his heart, didn’t want to commit to that, and you have to wonder: “Why?”

It seems that we here at CagePotato were more right than we knew when we said that championship belts just may not be a good idea in Strikeforce. Anyone who can claim a title in Strikeforce is obviously headed to competition in the big show, so why bother naming a champ if you don’t have a champion’s clause to keep him? Strikeforce would constantly be having tournaments and bouts to fill vacant championships, and you can imagine how much esteem the title would hold if a fighter claims the Strikeforce title, gets called up to the UFC, drops two straight, and then gets sent right back to Strikeforce. Is that fighter an automatic contender for the Strikeforce strap?

So upon reflection, it seems Coker has the right idea: trophies and belts are great for designating a big win like sweeping through a tournament field. Fighters should get some kind of tangible reward (aside from cash) for their wins. But with it now crystal-clear that Strikeforce will hand over its best and brightest to the UFC roster, there’s no need to anoint one person as the best in Strikeforce. That’s just the on-deck circle for the big leagues now.

You know, business as usual.


Cagepotato Comments

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sajjad8888- September 16, 2011 at 5:43 am
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Todd M- September 12, 2011 at 9:57 pm
First off u can't blame them for not wanting to give Barnett even an iota of a chance at taking their tin belt ransom, he's not exactly the poster boy for reliability, or a champion for that matter.
Second, No strikeforce belt has ever been relevant besides maybe the lightweight belt. Every other belt has been held ransom, vacated or had two non-worthy guys challenge for it. WW Diaz beats Zaromskis, Noons, Cyborg and Daley before vacating. MW Shamrock beat Baroni to get the belt, then lost it to Cung Le who vacated it to make movie's. Shields beat Mayhem to get the belt, controversially, then beat Henderson to retain it, the belt seemed to have some credibility untill Shields vacated it before rematching Mayhem. Jacare beat Kennedy in an amateur kickboxing match, defended against Lawler before losing another amateur kicboxing match to Rockhold. LHW Bobby Southworth, yeah THAT guy held the belt before getting thrashed by Babalu who got mirked by Mousassi who got dry humped by Queen Mo who got KO'd by Feijao who got KTFO'd by Henderson. HW Overeem beat Buentello in 2007 before holding that belt ransom for 3 years untill he 'defended' it against Brett "Wifebeater' Rogers, who was coming off a loss to Fedor. Now the Reem has left the belt and Strikeforce aren't in a rush to 'award' someone else with it, I wonder why?
noizy- September 12, 2011 at 2:11 pm
My guess is Zuffa doesn't want to give more leverage than necessary to the winner of the GP. If Cormier wins, I suspect they'll tell him he's champ. If Barnett wins, they'll give him that belt and try to get rid of him. Basically, they're not committing to anything publicly. Perhaps they were holding out cause they didn't want Kharitonov or Silva to be champ. In any case, there was someone on the GP they didn't want to crown a champ.
Get Off Me- September 12, 2011 at 1:12 pm
There will be no Strikeforce once the Showtime deal is done, no SF, no need for SF HW champion.... when the deals up, it's over.
texasbadass- September 12, 2011 at 11:44 am
They have no HW champ, these 2 are the final 2 contenders in their HW tournament, making this the title bout is the only thing in the world that makes any sense.

Unless of course the HW division is folding into the UFC, huh?
intercept440- September 12, 2011 at 11:39 am
yea i guess knocking out bigfoot and squashing the other guy doesnt give cormier a right to be there.
KB, are you high????

was Alaskan thunderfuck you smoked? maui wowie?, arizona pine? or some some good old red sensamilla?
.i mean you have to had smoked some good shit to say he doesnt belong in a tourney he kicked the hell out of his opponenets to get to the semi's in.
Kimbos Bread- September 12, 2011 at 10:37 am
No disrespect to Cormier, but I still don't feel he deserves to be there despite his performance in his last two bouts.
Fried Taco- September 12, 2011 at 9:30 am
The should have just gone ahead and engraved "Winner: Chad Griggs" on it.