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Tag: Strikeforce deathwatch

Strikeforce: Marquardt vs. Saffiedine Aftermath — The Awkward Goodbyes

I’ll be completely honest: I didn’t watch Strikeforce’s farewell card live last night. I recorded it, and watched it when I was done watching football. Am I just that dedicated of a 49ers/Packers fan? Not quite; last night was the first time I watched either team play all season. Rather, my mentality was that I haven’t been changing my schedule to accommodate Strikeforce events for the past two years now [Author Note: Damn, was the buyout really two years ago already? Time flies when you're watching something die.], so why start now for the promotion’s grand finale.

Reading through the collection of Strikeforce tributes online, it’s obvious that I’m not the only one feeling this way. Articles and tweets about the demise of Strikeforce have been respectful, but not overly-sentimental, and the comments sections of various liveblogs covering the event didn’t exactly blow up for the occasion. There were none of the regrets, what-nows and what-could-have-beens that usually come along with failed business ventures – just a few awkward goodbyes as Zuffa prepared to pull the plug on the machine that no longer served any purpose.

And honestly, why would anyone other than Strikeforce’s employees, fighters and Scott Coker feel any differently? The death of Strikeforce doesn’t mark the end of a promotion that has been pumping out relevant fights for the past two years. It isn’t the death of an alternative option for fighters not wanting to sign with Zuffa. It isn’t the even the end of free MMA on basic cable.

I guess it would be different if this card was stacked with the fighters who made Strikeforce Strikeforce, such as Cung Le, Nick Diaz, Alistair Overeem, Ronda Rousey, Gilbert Melendez and Luke Rockhold, but they’ve either been assimilated into the UFC by now or they’ve pulled out of the event due to injury/apathy. Instead, this card served as one final night of squash fights – one of which actually ended differently than you may have expected.

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A Fond Farewell: The Six Most Memorable Moments in Strikeforce History


(This belt means as much as the one Carlos Condit is carrying around. It’s funny how that works.)

By Jason Moles

In what comes as absolutely no surprise to anyone with a double-digit I.Q. or higher, Strikeforce will reportedly put the final nail in the coffin after their next event, which is currently scheduled for January 2013. Like any good friend, we tried to talk them out of their appointment with Dr. Kevorkian. Sadly, our friend just could not be reasoned with, leaving us no other options — we have to prepare for the funeral.

Here at CagePotato HQ (read: my desk at work when the boss is in the crapper), we feel it only necessary to start writing the eulogy now, while the memories are still vivid, in an attempt to bring comfort to the grieving family and friends when the time comes. Let’s take a stroll down memory lane, shall we, and look back fondly at the most memorable moments in Strikeforce’s storied mixed martial arts history.

Frank Shamrock Gets a Friendly Stockton Greeting From Nick Diaz

In the spring of 2009, Strikeforce served up a hot matchup between former UFC champion and MMA legend Frank Shamrock and the future Strikeforce Welterweight champion and world-renowned trash talker Nick Diaz. As you can glean from the above photo and the ensuing nut grab you can see on YouTube at roughly the 3:23 mark, these two were about as cordial as a Kentucky Derby winner who had just spotted Alistair Overeem waiting in the stable with a knife and fork.

The remarkable thing about the whole ordeal was that Diaz remained true to himself at the risk of coming across as a disrespectful punk, not willing to play nice simply to placate other people, even if they did sign his paycheck. In all of the press conferences that have been held over the years, fighters have generally been pretty calm and polite — so much so that you have to wonder if they realize that the guy they’re shaking hands with is the same guy who’s getting paid to cave his face in come fight night. Not the Stockton, Calif. native, though, whoe’s about as subtle as he is media friendly. You’ll never have to guess what the Cesar Gracie product is thinking. This classic photo by Esther Lin is a reminder of just that.

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Counterpoint: 5 Reasons Why Shutting Down Strikeforce Is F*cking Stupid


(Oh for God’s sake, Scott. You can put those things down now.)

By Doug “ReX13″ Richardson

While there’s been no official confirmation — yet — the story goes that Strikeforce has one more show scheduled in January, after which Zuffa will shutter the whole operation and add another head in Dana White‘s trophy case. Presumably, the Baldfather has a triple-locked basement room where he goes to sip single-barrel bourbon and contemplate the zombified heads of his former competitors, a quiet time that allows him to reflect on his successes and find some measure of inner peace. You’d think doing the backstroke through piles of money a la Scrooge McDuck would be enough for that, but you’re just a stupid pleb without two nickels to rub together, so what the fuck do you know?

Anywho, while some would say that Strikeforce has hung around long past its expiration date, I’m here to tell you that turning off the lights and canceling Scott Coker’s credit line is just the latest of Zuffa’s missteps when dealing with Strikeforce. Dana White bought a goose that laid golden eggs, killed it to get the magic gold-producing gland, taxidermied the corpse when that didn’t work, stuck his dick in the lukewarm cadaver because Ronda Rousey, and is now looking to decorate his mantle with blood-stained goose down because what are you going to do, this stupid goose is broken.

Brand Recognition

First of all, it bears repeating that Strikeforce pre-dates the UFC (not just Zuffa) by eight years. Strikeforce was putting on kickboxing shows when Dana White was still using GLH after his boxercise classes. This is a brand that’s been established for two decades, and fans, athletes, managers, and athletic commissions knew the brand. Now, the long-acknowledged #2 name in combat sports (at least in North America) is being thrown to the scrap heap because Zuffa was unable or unwilling to use it properly. Silver lining: maybe your Strikeforce merch will be collector’s items?

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GAME-CHANGER: Ronda Rousey Becomes the UFC’s First Female Fighter; Strikeforce to Fold After January 12th Title Tripleheader

Two pieces of related news broke last night that have massive implications for the future of MMA. First, Strikeforce superstar Ronda Rousey has reportedly become the first female fighter to join the UFC, and will immediately be crowned the UFC’s 135-pound women’s champion. The news was broken by TMZ, and confirmed by MMAFighting with sources close to the promotion, although neither the UFC nor Rousey have released an official statement. No word on Rousey’s promotional debut date or opponent, though her old pal Miesha Tate will apparently be a part of the UFC’s budding women’s roster as well.

It’s a historic moment for the sport, and one that’s surprising in how quickly it came together. In less than two years, we went from women will “never” be in the UFC, to women’s MMA is “absolutely going to happen” in the UFC, and much of the credit for that can be given to Rousey herself, whose nasty grappling and dude-in-a-beautiful-body appeal charmed UFC president Dana White into evolving his opinion.

Clearly, the promotion can make money off of the former Olympic medalist. The question is, who is she going to fight, and exactly how committed is the UFC to women’s MMA? Will the UFC be doing its best to fill out multiple weight divisions and regularly put female fighters on its cards, or is this just going to be the Ronda Rousey Show, with “Rowdy” armbarring whoever they can find to fight her, in relatively meaningless exhibitions three times a year? More details are expected to be announced early next week, which may shed some more insight on the UFC’s longer-term goals with their new acquisition.

And that brings us to the second bit of major news, which might even be more well-received, considering how long we’ve been begging for it

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Strikeforce Cancels Second Straight Event, Deathwatch Not Even Necessary at This Point

Well, it’s official: The debate should no longer be about whether or not Strikeforce is headed for an early grave, but whether or not we should allow their lifeless corpse to continue resting in its vegetative state or simply pull the plug. Less than a month after cancelling their September 29th card due to injury, word has just broke that Strikeforce will also be cancelling their event scheduled for November 3rd in light of another slew of injuries.

We know the discussion of the injury curse is beyond old news at this point, but is anyone else still having trouble coming to terms with the pure scale of devastation it has wreaked on the sport in 2012? Even the UFC has been forced to, as BG put it, scrape the bottom of the matchmaking barrel for available fighters and they’ve poached upwards of half the fighters that Strikeforce previously had under their banner, to the point that one key injury could completely undo a card. Thank God the UFC would never be forced to resort to such drastic measures.

In either case, Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker was already looking to the future when discussing the second straight cancellation:

Due to a series of injuries, we were forced to cancel the upcoming card on Nov. 3, but are already working to put together a stacked card in January.

Yeah, Scott, we’re sure UFC 156 will be pretty great too.

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Report: Showtime Close to Ending Relationship With Strikeforce, 11/3 Card in ‘Serious Jeopardy’


(Props: AXS TV Fights)

We knew that Strikeforce’s November 3rd event in Oklahoma City was in trouble after losing its main event and co-main event due to injuries. (By the way, top female prospect Sara McMann just dropped out of her main card fight against Liz Carmouche due to an undisclosed injury. Unbelievable.) But Strikeforce’s recent string of awful luck might actually turn out to be the death-knell for the promotion. Here’s what Kenny Rice had to say on yesterday’s episode of Inside MMA:

‘Inside MMA’ has heard from multiple sources that the relationship between Strikeforce and Showtime may be coming to an end. We are being told that the November 3rd event is in serious jeopardy, and there is a strong possibility that Showtime will no longer broadcast Strikeforce events. This could very possibly signify the end of the Strikeforce brand. Strikeforce was purchased by Zuffa, the UFC parent company, in March of 2011. We have yet to receive any word from either Showtime or Strikeforce as this development continues.

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If You Thought Strikeforce Should Try Harder, This Video Will Change Your Mind


Come on, Strikeforce. A simple MOM MADE PIZZA ROLLS would have been far less embarrassing

You know what? I honestly try to be optimistic about the future of Strikeforce. Even when the promotion is hemorrhaging money, even when their website is reduced to an MS Word document, I want to believe that the promotion is run by competent individuals who will find a way to keep it alive.

And then I see the vignette made to promote the upcoming “Strikeforce: Rockhold vs. Kennedy” on July 14, and feel stupid for learning nothing from the death of WCW. Case in point:

Video after the jump

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Strikeforce Deathwatch: Strikeforce.com Is Basically Just a Screen-Shot of a Microsoft Word Document Now


(“It looks like you’re starting an MMA promotion. May I suggest throwing all your money into a pit and lighting it on fire instead?”)

We haven’t had a good Strikeforce Deathwatch in a while, but this one might be my favorite. A month out from their Barnett vs. Cormier event on May 19th — which also features the lightweight title fight/trilogy match between Gilbert Melendez and Josh Thomson — several eagle-eyed fight fans have noticed that Strikeforce’s official website has been drastically scaled down.

Gone are all the sub-sections on Strikeforce.com, which directed readers to event calendars and fight rosters. Instead, it looks like some intern just screen-capped the latest press-release on MS Word — without running spelling-and-grammar-check first, mind you — posted it, and called it a day. The only link on the site is contained in the poster image at the top, which directs to a freakin’ GoDaddy page.

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Strikeforce Deathwatch: Roger Gracie Called Up to the UFC

Strikforce’s paper-thin light-heavyweight division just lost another one.

As GRACIEMAG first reported yesterday, Strikeforce light-heavyweight Roger Gracie has been called up to the UFC. While a date and an opponent have yet to be named for his UFC debut, Roger Gracie has hinted that he may enlist Anderson Silva to help him train for the bout. Roger Gracie is currently 4-1 in his career, with his last fight being a first round knockout loss to King Mo at Strikeforce: Barnett vs. Kharitonov.

On paper, it’s pretty strange to call up a guy with five professional fights who just lost to the big leagues. But it makes a little more sense when you actually look over Strikeforce’s light-heavyweight division. With King Mo on the shelves for a while, there really isn’t much to offer Gracie in Strikeforce. As the age old saying goes: If Gracie fights Ovince St. Preux or Gegard Mousasi in Strikeforce and no one watches, does the fight even matter? At least I think that’s how that one went.

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Strikeforce Deathwatch: Rockhold vs. Jardine Live Gate Totals a Meager $68,805


(This is when we’d normally tell you to keep your chin up, Keith, but that seems to be what got you here in the first place.) 

Perhaps this might not come as a shocking revelation to most of the Potato Nation, but Strikeforce is in some bad shape. Like, Bubba on the beaches of Vietnam kind of shape. Let’s put it this way, if we were gambling men, and someone were taking bets on its probable death, we’d bet everything we own on death.

What are we jawing on about? Well, the Nevada State Athletic Commission just released its figures for “Strikeforce: Rockhold vs. Jardine” today, which took place at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada on January 7th, and the live gate for the event totaled LESS THAN HALF OF WHAT ROBBIE LAWLER WAS PAID TO FIGHT. As ridiculous as it may seem, Lawler did manage to knock out Aldan Amagov with the power of his testicles alone, so the somewhat exuberant compensation he received seems fair in this case. But boy does it not look good for Strikeforce.

Hauling in an abysmal 68,805 dollars, “Rockhold vs. Jardine” achieved a final attendance of just under 2000 (1992) with only 927 tickets sold. The other 1,065 tickets were comped, and 727 tickets remained unsold. The total fighter purse for this event was an even $566,000.

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