Jay Hieron went from fighting Nick Diaz for the Strikeforce welterweight belt on Showtime to fighting Jesse ‘Pee-Pants’ Taylor on the untelevised prelims. That wasn’t entirely Strikeforce’s fault … Nick Diaz refused to show up for a drug test and pulled out of the fight. But then instead of re-booking the Diaz / Hieron fight, Strikeforce instead went for Diaz vs Marius Zaromskis at their Strikeforce: Miami show. And yep, that fight is for the Strikeforce welterweight belt.
I don’t really blame Strikeforce for booking Zaromskis instead of Hieron – they’re a smaller organization and you don’t just pass over the opportunity to book a much more interesting fight on account of some guy’s feelings. But still, you’d figure they’d throw Hieron a bone by at least making sure his next fight would actually get seen on TV. But guess what?
Headlining the preliminary card will be a recently confirmed matchup between Jay Hieron (18-4 MMA, 1-0 SF) and Joe Riggs (32-10 MMA, 3-2 SF). Both are considered top welterweight contenders in the Strikeforce organization, and though Showtime will not air the fight, sources close to the Strikeforce promotion indicated the group may be seeking an alternative method of broadcasting the matchup.
‘Headlining the prelims’, huh? How prestigious! Here’s an idea for an alternative method of broadcasting the matchup: move it onto a Strikeforce Challengers card instead. Unfortunately, my understanding of the situation is there’s some sort of goofy contractual difference between a ‘real’ Strikeforce event and the Challenger events that keep that kind of thing from happening.