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By Zach Arnold | May 16, 2010
Comments from an MMAFighting.com interview he did after last night’s St. Louis event:
Thoughts on last night’s show and on Alistair Overeem being dominant
“Very happy and I think that the people that came here and the people that watched it on Showtime definitely got their money’s worth and you know I was really impressed with Alistair Overeem, who pretty much dominated Brett Rogers which I was surprised that he would be able to dominate in that fashion because Brett’s a guy that you know I was right here and we talked about this before, I was watching Fedor’s head bounce off the canvas going ‘Holy Cow, Brett’s going to knock out Fedor,’ and so for Alistair to show, he’s showed that he’s the guy to beat and I think he’s a guy that you know if Fedor beats Fabricio (Werdum) we’ll sit down with M-1 and we’ll have a serious conversation about that fight happening because I think the fans would want to see it.”
Was there a sigh of relief that Overeem looked at good as he did given that he hasn’t fought in Strikeforce in 2 1/2 years?
“I mean, the prodigal son has returned, right? And, you know we waited for him and I kept telling my guys and you know and everybody saying, look, we’re going to wait for Alistair because you know he is injured, he was injured last you know last year, and he can show you on his knuckles where he had the infection that he got in his knuckle from an injury during sparring, so we waited for him and a lot of people were skeptical, should we do an interim title, but I’m glad that he waited for him and for the American public to see him on Showtime or at the live event here tonight, I think that it’s pretty impressive, you know.”
If Fedor beats Fabricio Werdum on 6/26 in San Jose, will a fight between Overeem and Fedor happen?
“I feel that we’ll have a good shot to do it and I think that it’s a fight that should happen. And you know when you talk about Strikeforce we’ve always tried to bring the fights that people want to see and that’s a fight we will work really hard to try to put together. Can I guarantee it? Absolutely not. It’s a fight that we’ll sit down with M-1 after the next fight with Fedor and we’ll have that conversation with M-1.”
Has Fedor not fought for the Strikeforce Heavyweight title because you are afraid that he would win it and run off with the belt and go elsewhere?
“No, that is not true at all because this situation was the timing of it, right? We were going through with our little dance with M-1, let’s say, while we put this fight together and if the stars would have been [aligned] Alistair would have been fighting Fedor in April on the CBS show. That’s what really what we were shooting for but you know Fedor is with M-1, we had situations with M-1 that he had some hiccups, we’re trying to fix that all that, we fixed it, and this fight was already announced and tickets were on-sale and we’re already down the road so, you know it’s just about timing and now after June, the timing can be perfect for this fight to happen.”
Will Alistair Overeem fight for Strikeforce again in 2010?
“Yes, absolutely, 100%. And I can tell you the deal that I made with them was, you know, before when I first started we didn’t have a television deal, we were more of a regional promotion, we didn’t have Showtime, we didn’t have the 150 fighters on our roster that we did, no CBS deal, no sponsors, no international TV deal, it was a live-gate business and you know we shared him with DREAM and PRIDE actually before that but now we have a direct contract with Alistair and we had a long talk 3-4 months ago and they assured me that he would be here to fight in the Summer and that he would fight 2-3 times before he went back to Japan to fight before the end of the year, so he will be here and we’re looking forward to showing him to the public.”
Will Feijao fight King Mo for the Strikeforce Light Heavyweight title?
“I don’t want to say yes, I don’t want to say no, but I definitely think it was a step in the right direction. But I think you know he’s got a little I’m sure a little thorn in his side with that Mike Kyle fight, right? I’m sure he’ll probably want to fix that first and then move forward if he can, but I think we’re going to have some good fights for him and I think King Mo, he definitely will move forward and his stock definitely rose but you know we have to sit down and talk to King Mo and we’ll see what happens.”
The Strikeforce Middleweight picture is in limbo. Where does Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza fit into the mix now after his win over Joey Villasenor? Have you talked to Jake Shields recently? What is his status with SF?
“I would say Jacare is definitely right up in there mix, I mean, you know, let’s see how Robbie Lawler does with Babalu and you know let’s see what happens but Jacare is definitely you know developing into one of the best MMA fighters in the world. His ground skills are, you know, undeniable but you know I see some good stand-up out of him and I see some good wrestling and I see some good double-leg, single-leg takedowns from this guy so you know he’s developing into a real MMA fighter and you know he’s definitely going to be in mix.
And with Jake, you know everybody was basically here this week so we’ll pick it up again with his management next week. I personally have not talked to him (since April 17th), but my guys have.”
Did Jake Shields mugging the camera with Dana White bother you? Wasn’t that inappropriate by him?
“You know, here’s the thing. Everybody asks me that. I just think it’s silly. It’s really silly.”
“That’s something you have to ask Jake. I mean, to me, fighters sometimes do some things and you don’t know what the motivations are, but you know what, my job is put on these fights and we’re going to put these fights and I feel very lucky to have Showtime as a partner backing us and allow us to put the best fights and look at the fight card tonight, I thought it was amazing and I feel good that we got a good show under our belt.”
What is Andrei Arlovski’s future after he lost to Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva on Saturday night in St. Louis?
“He’ll be back. He’s not going to end like that, I know he’ll back, but, you know I think it’s really going to be up to him. I think at some point he’s going to have to look in the mirror and like Alistair said, he lost three fights in a row, and then really took an internal look at his whole personal life, his training, his friends, you know, everything, and you know because he ahd three losses in a row when he kind of took that step back to evaluate and I think that, you know, with Andrei he’s going to have to do that.”
Will we see Roger Gracie back in Strikeforce in 2010?
“Absolutely. You know we’re not going to see him over the Summer because he’s going to be fighting in the Abu Dhabi championships and I think June-July is busy for him but you’ll see him back and I’m proud of the guy, I think that he did a good job and Kevin Randleman’s no joke and for him to get him down, submit him, is impressive.”
Why is Jan Finney and not Erin Toughill facing Cyborg on 6/26 in San Jose?
“Erin Toughill wanted to take some time off and come back in late July-August and we told her that’s fine and so we’ll see Erin Toughill probably in Strikeforce in July or August and then we’ll offer her to Cyborg if Cyborg beats Jan Finney, we’ll offer her to Cyborg before the end of the year.”
“I mean, we haven’t talked to Gina and I think she’s still doing her movie thing. So, we will be reaching out. Gina, we miss you, and give us a call.”