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Zombie Strikeforce press conference notes

It’s official! Strikeforce and Showtime had a press conference this afternoon confirming the continuation of their strange relationship through 2012. Let’s break down all the nitty gritty:

The deal is for 6-8 shows, which will set it on the exact same schedule the WEC used to be on. Who knows why there’s two events worth of wiggle room, but whatevs.

The heavyweight division is toast. Josh Barnett and Daniel Cormier will fight to wrap up the HWGP and then whoever wins that will fight ‘a top ranked heavyweight’ in an attempt to make the tournament seem less pointless. After that the UFC will cherrypick the division and shut it down.

Women’s 135 & 145 divisions will stay, which is really good because Cris Cyborg dying of kidney failure trying to cut to 135 would have made for some bad headlines.

Scott Coker will run the day to day operations (at least the ones that have been left to him by Zuffa)

The current broadcast team will stay the same because we love them all SO MUCH and there is no room for improvement there at all.

Undercard fights will now air on Showtime Extreme, a channel I never knew existed that I’m sure no one really gets. But hey, that’s neat. Maybe Strikeforce will stop outsourcing their prelims to local promotions now.

Strikeforce Challengers is dead, and thank baby Jesus for that. The whole concept of a B-league for the B-league was always pretty stupid, and now it is no more.

Of course, that doesn’t mean that Showtime is willing to admit Strikeforce is a defacto B-league. Keep that delusion strong, new ShoSports dude:

“Let’s be real clear: Strikeforce is not a secondary brand,” Espinoza said. “Luke Rockhold is not a secondary fighter, Cris Cyborg is not a secondary fighter, GIna [Carano] is not a secondary fighter, Gilbert [Melendez] is not a secondary fighter. This is a top-tier organization. It was a top-tier organization as a brand when Scott [Coker] was running it independently of Zuffa, and it will continue to be now that they’re in partnership with Zuffa.”

Dana White also chimed in on that note:

“There’s nothing wrong with being a feeder league, but that’s not what this thing’s going to be.”

Which is kinda too bad, because whatever the fuck Luke Rockhold vs Keith Jardine is, it doesn’t do much for me.

  • FilmDrunk

    Poor Jardine. At least he still has his looks.

  • Redping

    Gina Carano is a fighter? a first tier fighter? when did this happen?

  • fightlinker

    first tier quitter

  • Mixed Martial Adam

    So Jardine gets kicked out of the ufc, loses his first Strikeforce fight badly, gets a bullshit-gift DRAW, then drops a weight class and gets a title shot immediately.

    And that is supposed to be considered a top-tier organization. Seriously. That’s ridiculous.

    The major problem is anyone with half a shot at the UFC will hold out and refuse to sign with Stirkeforce. No one decent will sign a contract with Strikeforce only to get locked up for a few years when they could just hold out a little longer and get a UFC shot instead. This system will make things worse and ensure their roster gets even staler. If they only admitted it was a feeder league and moved fighters back and forth then the promotion would actually gain some real viewers. So stupid.

  • Symbul

    What? You forgot about Brett Rogers’ or Jan Finney’s title shots? This is business as usual for SF.

  • Letibleu



  • CAP

    They can call it what they want but hopefully its runs as a feeder league. “There’s nothing wrong with that” = that’s what it is.

  • fightlinker

    yeah seems like everyone but the ego cocks at Sho wanted it to be a B-league and the UFC isn’t going to bust a deal over what is literally a delusion that the two promotions are somehow equal. I hear the Showtime contract is pretty peanutsy, but again my feeling is this is like the WEC where the primary purpose is to keep other promotions from coming in and setting up shop with Showtime. Any other bonuses (135 & 145) are just that, bonuses

  • DJ ThunderElbows

    Feeder status would’ve given it stronger marketing as “the next generation of UFC fighters” or something along those lines instead of “here are a bunch of guys who aren’t fighting in the UFC force.”


  • Reverend Clint

    yeah have it be like the new king of the cage since like 5 years ago thats where all the good fighters came from. gives new guys some exposure and ready for the lime light.