Babalu vs Mousasi was an awesome fight for Strikeforce to pick up and Mousasi a great fighter to sign. But once again we’re stuck in a similar situation as we were with Fedor: none of the fights we really want to see him in are possible in Strikeforce. Bloody Elbow sums it up:
One only has to look at the last edition of the USA Today/SB Nation Rankings at 205 to see how few legitimate matchups there are. Mousasi beat then #10 Sobral leaving the only non-UFC ranked fighters as #17 Vladimir Matyushenko (a ratings disaster), #20 Sokoudjou (last seen by the American audience getting run out of the UFC, also 1-3 at 205 since his PRIDE run), #23 Muhammed Lawal (a potentially appealing option, but one without much American name value), and #25 Trevor Prangley (a ratings black hole).
You can even cut out Vladimir Matyushenko, who the UFC picked up just to thin out the 205 free agent landscape even more. And Gegard is already set to fight Sokoudjou in Japan for the Super Hulk tournament. King Mo is also managed by M-1 so it’s questionable whether they’d sign off on having two of their prospects fight each other.
That isn’t to say there aren’t fights out there. Perhaps Ricardo Arona will re-surface? And there are always aging legends out there looking to pass the torch (aka get their asses handed to them) for the right kind of money. It just makes me a little bit sad that we’re sitting here scratching our heads over who Mousasi fights next when there would have been a wealth of exciting and challenging fights for him in the UFC.