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15 Moments of Instant Regret [GIFs]

Tag: Strikeforce

From the ‘Why Couldn’t This Have Happened a Year Ago’ File: Gus Johnson Leaves CBS for Fox


(Sometimes purple lipstick happens in MMA commentating.)

According to a Sports Illustrated report, MMA’s most maligned play-by-play commentator Gus Johnson is leaving CBS to work for Fox.

Not sure if this has anything to do with the fact that the UFC bought Strikeforce and UFC president Dana White has made no secret of the fact that he doesn’t care for Johnson’s fight calling abilities and as such it seemed unlikely that GuJo would be included in their vision of business as usual .

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Rumors: Fedor Emelianenko vs. Dan Henderson Slated for July 30th Showtime Event in Chicago

Dan Henderson UFC MMA photos Strikeforce grill funny Fedor
(To defeat Fedor, one must prepare like Fedor. / Props: CombatLifestyle.com)

This morning, MMA Junkie reported that Strikeforce has penciled in July 30th for a major Showtime-televised event, which would put their plans for a pay-per-view event on the back-burner for now. According to the report, the Sears Centre in Hoffman Estates, Illinois (just outside of Chicago), has surfaced as a possible venue, and Fedor Emelianenko vs. Dan Henderson was named as a potential headliner. Scott Coker and Lorenzo Fertitta are currently working to arrange the matchup, while Dana White is doing his best not to meddle. (Said Dana last week at a UFC 129 press-conference: “Lorenzo’s working on it. Me getting anywhere near that thing? You’ll never see that fight.”)

According to SBNation’s Jonathan Snowden, sources from both camps are now saying that the fight is on for 7/30 at the Sears Centre. Josh Gross adds that the bout will be at heavyweight. No official word from Strikeforce yet; we’ll update you when we know more. The Sears Centre was the site of Emelianenko’s last victory, against Brett Rogers back in November 2009. Since then, he’s suffered back-to-back stoppage losses against Fabricio Werdum and Antonio Silva. Henderson last competed in March, when he defeated Rafael Cavalcante for the Strikeforce light-heavyweight title.

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‘Mayhem’ Miller on Getting Banned from TV: ‘It’s Not the First Place I’ve Been 86′d From’

(How many muppets must die for Jason Miller to dress in the manner to which he’s become accustomed? Pic: ESPN)

Truly spoken like a dude who’s used to being asked to leave. Some pretty classic quotes out on Tuesday from fighter, television host and all-purpose awesome dude Jason “Mayhem” Miller re: recent reports that Strikeforce literally couldn’t find him a fight during the last year of his contract because he’d become persona non grata at both Showtime and parent network CBS. Turns out, though he knew he was in hot water after his participation in the April, 2010 Nashville brawl, nobody at any of the above corporate entities bothered to inform Mayhem that he was no longer welcome on the two television stations and – therefore – damaged goods for Strikeforce. Instead, they just put him on the shelf to rot.

“I asked, and guess what? Nobody would tell me,” Miller told MMA Fighting. “This is a political environment. Nobody’s going to tell you. They’re just going to be cowards about it. That’s the way of the world. Nobody’s going to tell the crazy ultimate fighter guy to his face, ‘Hey, screw you.’ They’re not going to do that.”

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Business as Usual Update: Dana to Meet with Diaz, Fertitta Working on Fedor vs. Henderson

(“What, that bright light? It shines down on us from heaven. Come see how it feels, Scott. Nice, right?”)

Despite everybody’s continued claims that things have never been better inside Strikeforce, we know the UFC has already taken over the company’s relations with the media and begun poaching its biggest stars. Now, it seems UFC executives are also neck deep in Strikeforce’s business, reportedly working (at least for the time being) to make sure the smaller fight promotion’s top remaining draws are happy. That’s the word out of Toronto on Thursday, where multiple reports say Dana White will meet with Strikeforce welterweight champ Nick Diaz after UFC 129 and that co-owner Lorenzo Fertitta is already seeing to the task of making the proposed superfight between Fedor Emelianenko and Dan Henderson become a reality.

First and foremost, White seems understandably concerned with Diaz’s apparent designs on bolting MMA for boxing. As quickly as plans to have the Stockton bad boy fight Fernando Vargas fell apart a couple weeks back, new reports surfaced saying former super middleweight champion Jeff Lacy might be interested. Perhaps most interestingly, White said this week Diaz’s contract actually does allow for such foolishness – which is another good example of why UFC people need to be up in SF’s business – but he’s obviously not crazy about the idea.

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Going Down Without a Fight: Mayhem’s Departure Makes It Clear Zuffa has No Long Term Plans for Strikeforce


(Jake, you be Strikeforce. Jason, you be the UFC. Now, show us how the next few months will go … / Photo via Sherdog)

It’s been three days since Jason “Mayhem” Miller’s sudden jump to the UFC and we still haven’t heard anything substantive on the topic from Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker or anyone else in the lame duck MMA company. A week ago Coker went on a popular MMA “radio” show and danced around the issue of Miller’s future in Strikeforce. He said the promotion was talking to Mayhem’s management about a fight this summer. No mention of the fact Miller was twisting in the breeze without a contract. No mention that the UFC might stick its beak in. Used to be, it felt like a waste of time to ask Coker questions because it was hard to get a straight answer out of the guy. Now it feels like it’s a waste of time because he may no longer even know what’s going on inside his own company.

For all his talk about his ongoing commitment to “growing Strikeforce and making it work,” it’s pretty clear that Coker (and maybe Strikeforce itself) has become the metaphorical equivalent of a WWE referee. He’s just a dude standing the middle of the ring in an official-looking outfit, desperately pleading for order while the battle rages heedlessly around him. No one is listening. No one is even pretending he has any power anymore. That’s sad, because Coker seems like one of the sport’s legitimate good guys, but the quiet loss of Miller last week is maybe the most compelling evidence yet that it’s only a matter of time before that phone call from Vegas comes in, informing the Strikeforce staff that the charade is over.

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UFC Reportedly Loses ‘Huge’ New Sponsorship After Online Poker Indictments

(“I survived the Full Tilt Poker bust and all I got was this crappy jacket.” Too soon? Pic: WSOP.com)

The federal indictments lobbed at three top poker websites late last week – including noted fight sponsor Full Tilt Poker – continue to cause a troubling ripple effect in the MMA world, new reports indicate. You may have already seen the stories over the weekend about how much the sudden absence of such poker site dough may or may not adversely affect the bottom line of individual fighters, but notable sports business reporter Darren Rovell (who works a lot on ESPN) now says the charges against Full Tilt also mean the loss of an important upcoming deal for the UFC.

“The UFC had a huge new sponsorship deal on the table with Full Tilt that will now go out the window with the feds bust,” Rovell tweeted on Monday afternoon. This came on the heels of a story from MMA Junkie quoting agent Ken Pavia saying the poker shutdown “will severely impact fighters’ sponsor revenue, which traditionally matched their show pay for our televised clients.”

So yeah, any time big sponsors drop out (or get indicted) and their money gets taken out of the pockets of fighters and the coffers of the only important company left in the industry, we have to do the Dennis Hopper voice again: Bad things, man. For those of you who may have actually gone outside or done things with friends/family over the weekend, a short recap of the story and some reflection on what it might mean for MMA are after the jump.

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Hendo Says No to 220, Will Fight Fedor at Heavyweight

(Vid: YouTube/ClinchGear)

When Dan Henderson tweeted a link to the above video interview with his boys at Clinch Gear Radio earlier today and promised it contained the “real deal” about his potential fight with Fedor Emelianenko, we didn’t exactly expect a bombshell. Didn’t get one, either, as Hendo and Co. spend most of the 10:45 talking about the Zuffa, LLC acquisition of Strikeforce and his light heavyweight title victory over Rafael Feijao. When the topic does finally turn to the rumored superfight with Emelianenko, Henderson says he’d be all for it, with one sort of surprising caveat: He says he wouldn’t take the fight if it is offered to him at 220-pounds.

Nope, as if to confirm his status as an all-around badass, Hendo sounds like he wants no part of such made-up nonsense, he’ll take Fedor at heavyweight or not at all. Watch the vid if you don’t believe us. “It would be an honor to fight him and if I did fight him, there would be no catchweight,” Henderson says. “I don’t do those at all. If I’m going to fight him at his weight, I’m going to fight him at his weight … I wouldn’t take the fight if it was at a catchweight.”

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The Case for Gilbert: Is Melendez the Cure for What Ails the UFC Lightweight Division?

(A few more fights and Melendez will finally realize his dream of owning matching gloves. Pic: ESPN)

In the weeks since the UFC seized control of Strikeforce, there has understandably been a ton of talk about the potential for cross-promotional superfights. Even as honchos from both companies hold firm that it these dream fights won’t happen right away, the fanboy in all of us can’t help but titter a bit over the thought of Overeem vs. Velasquez, Diaz vs. St. Pierre or Fedor vs. Couture. Fine, maybe that last one would’ve been better had it gone down back in the ’70s, but you see our point. With apologies to the abovementioned dudes however, in the wake of last weekend’s “Diaz vs. Daley” show we can’t help but feel the most valuable commodity the UFC acquired with Strikeforce may well be Gilbert Melendez.

And we mean, like, right now. Immediately. As long as we can all agree that Strikeforce is just beginning its trudge toward the slow, painful death of the dinosaur, dodo and WEC (which we do, right?) there is simply no reason to confine Melendez to a terminally ill roster where he is essentially the only legitimate lightweight. Especially when the UFC lightweight division – arguably the best, most competitive weight class on the planet – has so many current problems. Problems that the abrupt addition of Melendez might solve right away. We explain, after the jump …

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Vadim Finkelstein Comments on How He Feels Zuffa’s Purchase of Strikeforce Will Change the Game


(Video courtesy of RuTube/IronWorld)

During a recent interview with the Russian sports news website MixFight.ru, M-1 Global president and the manager of Fedor Emelianenko, Vadim Finkelstein spoke a bit more about his thoughts on the recent acquisition of Strikeforce by Forza LLC, an offshoot of the UFC’s parent company Zuffa LLC. According to the man often referred to by Dana White as one of the “crazy Russian,” he is one of a growing number of people who aren’t buying the UFC president’s claims that in spite of the purchase, things will be business as usual for both promotions.

“The news of the acquisition of Strikeforce by Zuffa caught me so off guard that I initially did not believe it when I got the call from our partners telling us about it, but the next day the deal was reported on both of their official websites. What are my impressions? First of all, I do not believe that Strikeforce will somehow maintains its independence from the UFC and the organizations will continue to work as they did before. I do not believe that they will fight for the fighters’ best interests. I think that the fate of Strikeforce is quite predictable and will be a repeat the fate of other organizations that the UFC purchased.”

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Fedor vs. Henderson Looking Like It’s Going to Happen

(Will watch.)

In spite of the fact that both former PRIDE champions are from completely different weight classes, it looks like a proposed bout between Strikeforce light heavyweight champion Dan Henderson and former pound-for-pound king Fedor Emelianenko has been agreed to in principle by both fighters.

According to a report by MMAFighting that cites Henderson’s manager Aaron Crecy as well as “a source with knowledge of the situation” and an unnamed rep from M-1 Global, Hendo and “The Last Emperor” have both said they would accept the fight if offered.

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