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The fallout from Nick Diaz not taking his California drug test

By Zach Arnold | August 11, 2009

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Bryan Alvarez relays a damning account as to how everything fell apart over the weekend in regards to Nick Diaz failing to take a California State Athletic Commission drug test. Alvarez’s reporting also makes Strikeforce boss Scott Coker look either unorganized, incompetent, or a victim of bad luck. I have no idea which label it is or if the reporting is fair given what the LA Times recently had to say about the CSAC allegedly allowing a fighter who had a record of Hepatitis C to fight on a Pure Combat show.

Go become a subscriber to Bryan’s site just to read his full report on the Diaz situation. Here’s a snippet from it:

Strikeforce had a press conference at 11 a.m. Pacific on Monday and Coker was immediately asked about Diaz. He said they had been in contact with the CSAC and that Diaz was on his way to take the test, and that they expected the results by Thursday. Douglas, moments after hearing that, said he had heard nothing about this. Loretta Hunt, who had also been following the story all weekend, relayed this information to Coker. Coker said he had been in contact with Segovia. Segovia noted that he had been in contact with Coker but had heard nothing from Diaz or Gracie all weekend despite sending four e-mails with all of his contact information including cell phone numbers. Douglas noted how interesting it was that Gracie had apparently been in discussions about the story with Hunt all weekend but had not made contact with the CSAC even a single time.

Dave Meltzer’s conjecture is that Cesar Gracie & Nick Diaz swerved Scott Coker when Coker said he would buy them plane tickets and went through with it.

On the court docket

Ken Shamrock’s lawsuit against Zuffa LLC, the parent company of UFC, is proceeding towards a non-jury trial. Shamrock filed the lawsuit due to claims of a breach of contract. Dana White and Kirk Hendrick both were put under deposition last month (July 17th). The bench trial is expected to take place on October 5th.

Regarding the PRIDE FC Worldwide Holdings LLC lawsuit versus Nobuyuki Sakakibara (DSE, Ubon, etc.), I’ve never seen so many motions and challenges filed in such a short amount of time. The list of minute developments is overwhelming. In addition, there are several third party defendants named in the case (Frank Fertitta III, Lorenzo Fertitta, Spectrum Gaming, Zuffa) and it’s messy. This case was supposed to go to trial around February or March of 2010, but those dates have been canceled. The lawsuit was originally filed in February of 2008.

Topics: Media, MMA, StrikeForce, Zach Arnold | 43 Comments » | Permalink | Trackback |

43 Responses to “The fallout from Nick Diaz not taking his California drug test”

  1. 45 Huddle says:

    Scott Coker completely dropped the ball on his real first attempt at putting on a major show on Showtime.

    He booked 2 guys in title fights who weren’t even medically capable of competing. He didn’t make sure his fighter’s were licensed on time. The completely unprofessional conference calls wet just icing on the cake.

    No matter which way you look at it, the Diaz issue looks bad on Coker. Plus the fact that he doesn’t have the authority in his own fighter’s eyes to get them to take a pee test speaks volumes.

    No matter what industry you work in, one theme is always the same. Early opinions of employees (which Coker is to Showtime) happen, and once they do, it is extremely hard to reverse it in the minds of management. Coker has dug a huge hole for himself.

    It’s very obvious he is use to a smaller regional show where if something goes wrong, nobody cares. It’s no big deal when your card goes up in flames when all it will e used for are vtaped shows at 3am. It’s very different when you have a major pay network behind you.

    Right now Coker is completely out of his league. I believe it’s the combination of being under the microscope AND having just too many big named athletes under contract. These aren’t his friends like Frank Shamrock….

  2. Alan Conceicao says:

    Its pretty obvious that Coker did what he had to. He did what was in his power to get Diaz to show up to piss in a cup and made sure to have a replacement ready if he didn’t. The blame is clearly on Nick Diaz and his camp for not communicating to anyone, no showing the drug test, etc. If Coker’s smart, he won’t release him either. Let him languish under contract.

  3. Detective Roadblock says:

    Well, Ivan, still want to disagree with our analysis? Diaz tries to swerve the Press all weekend. Never contacts CSAC. Gets on a conference call. All pretending he’s going to fight Jay Hieron. But Diaz never wanted to fight Hieron.

    This isn’t about marijuana. This is about a bad style matchup for Diaz. Case closed.

  4. klown says:

    What is the gist of Ken Shamrock’s case against Zuffa?

  5. SD Jones says:

    So Loretta basically made herself a part of the story?

  6. Pierre-Luc Allie says:

    On Sherdog Radio Network, Loretta said that the Diaz camp had a deal with Garcia the former head of the CSAC to only test Nick the night of his fight. The reason was his marijuana licence that allow him to smoke. Gracie tough that even if Garcia left the CSAC, the deal was still in place.

  7. 45 Huddle says:

    Unless something is in writing, it isn’t a true deal.

    Either way, marijuana is on the band substances list in CA. For Diaz to be cutting it that close is truly unprofessional.

    What are they going to do now with the Welterweight Division? Does Diaz/Riggs still go down as planned for the title? Or does the winner of Hieron/Taylor get a shot at Diaz?

    Either way, one of the potential contenders is now going to get screwed and either have a long off period, or fight again before getting another title shot…

  8. Detective Roadblock says:

    This part aboutthe backroom deal is all hearsay. Diaz and Gracie supporters have been saying they were going to test Monday and that this was all a misunderstanding the whole weekend.

    But Diaz and Gracie never talked to the CSAC.

    I’m all for the legalization of marijuana. Not just medicinal but across the board. I used to live in CA. The medical marijuana requirements are a joke. Anyone who wants a pot card gets one. They give them out for chronic headaches, asthma, Nick has one for hyperactivity disorder. First off hyperactivity disorder is a wastepail diagnosis. Let’s all stop pretending Nick needs to smoke pot for a severe mescal reason. The guy is a pothead. That’s it. If he can’t focus without gettting high it seems like competing in an MMA fight while sober would be extremely dangerous. No?

    People need to use critical thinking and not just believe every darn thing they read.

  9. Mark says:

    I don’t believe the story about Gracie striking a deal with Garcia for Diaz. That flies in the face of every other story you ever heard about Gracia being a total-law & order commissioner. He also made comments about the “pot cards” not saving someone from a suspension for having THC in their urine regardless of what their doctor says. That does not sound like a man who would agree to basically turn a blind eye to a guy bragging that he was going to get over on the CSAC.

  10. Alan Conceicao says:

    What are they going to do now with the Welterweight Division?

    Probably something you’ll complain about? Let’s be frank; apart from folding or becoming an official feeder series, there’s nothing Strikeforce can do that would please you.

    Either way, one of the potential contenders is now going to get screwed and either have a long off period, or fight again before getting another title shot…

    There was a lot of worrying that Hieron wouldn’t have a fight earlier over this story and obviously he does. I don’t pretend to have a crystal ball about his future, but as for Diaz and Riggs, my feeling is that they both put themselves on the backburner. I won’t shed many tears for them.

  11. Dave2 says:

    I know that certain types of Hepatitis are not curable. You can get Hep A or Hep B(maybe C as well?) shots to become immune to them but those two are not curable from what I heard. Is Hepatitis C curable? If not, why the hell did CSAC let that fighter fight?

  12. Dave2 says:

    As for Scott Coker, he is a very smart businessman. But it seems that after the EliteXC acquisitions, Strikeforce has had to deal with many problems. It’s really horrible. It’s a train wreck. This isn’t like Coker. He’s a 20+ year fight game veteran. He’s successfully put on K-1 shows for FEG, he’s promoted kickboxing for so long, his Strikeforce promotion was going well up until now, etc. What’s going on Coker?

  13. 45 Huddle says:

    “Probably something you’ll complain about? Let’s be frank; apart from folding or becoming an official feeder series, there’s nothing Strikeforce can do that would please you.”

    Wrong.

    Strikeforce needs to be like a Small Market Baseball Team. Like the A’s or Twins. Teams that do have losing seasons, but also some really good seasons as well and a track record of a great farm system and cultivating talent from the start. Since these teams don’t have the funds to compete with the Yankees or Red Sox, they don’t even try. Instead, their success is rooted in being great scouts and getting athletes when they are young.

    This is what Strikeforce needs to do. They needs to work harder then the UFC at scooping up young talent. Be more aggressive on the scounting the small market shows and try and get the fighters that might have slipped through the Zuffa machine….

    When they liter most of your weight classes with UFC dropouts, it doesn’t do much for Strikeforce or MMA. From the long term perspective of the sport, just taking what other organizations have done and repacking it does very little for MMA.

    Outside of Cung Le, and maybe Gilbert Melendez…. SF has done little to build up talent. And it seems like the guys they do try to build up, it’s obvious they probably can’t even compete with the UFC dropouts they have.

    If Strikeforce was going the way I have suggested, I would be praising them. They would be an asset to the sport of MMA. They would be adding value for the fans.

    As it stands right now, they are mostly just a UFC Dropout Repackaging Company…. And that is why I am so negative on them.

  14. 45 Huddle says:

    And just to validate my point….

    If they get the fighters very young, they can hold on to many of them through loyalty and financially taking care of the winners.

    This would not make them a farm system to the UFC. This would make them the best company at doing what Zuffa really doesn’t have time for… Which is building up many fighters from day one. Zuffa can do it to a degree with a few select guys like Matt Riddle, but they just don’t have the roster space due to such a concentration on the bigger named fighters right now.

  15. Alan Conceicao says:

    This is what Strikeforce needs to do. They needs to work harder then the UFC at scooping up young talent.

    Except if you go down that route, we enter the Jake Shields/Robbie Lawler/Mayhem Miller Zone, and you’ve made it abundantly clear how you feel about their reputations and places in the sport. There’s simply too many guys on the market who’ve had a Zuffa contract for Strikeforce to ignore anyone with a couple fights in the UFC a few years ago.

    We get it though. You don’t want Strikeforce to compete and when they do, you want them to fail. Its a good gimmick. Trembow and that Smith dude will come out heated, I’m sure.

  16. Dave2 says:

    I agree with Huddle’s suggestion for Strikeforce. They should operate like a small-market MLB team.
    1) Try to corner the market on young talent. (There are PLENTY of guys that the UFC didn’t bother/failed to pick up)
    2) Lock them down to long-term contracts, loan them out to other promotions to gain valuable experience (ie. sending Strikeforce fighters to Japan to compete in DREAM or Sengoku. Especially the grand prixs. Plenty of young guns made their name in Japanese GP tournaments. Think Mousasi, Alvarez, Zaromskis, etc.)
    3) If demand rises for your up-and-comers and they are still under contract with you, you could negotiate with Zuffa to sell your fighters to them in exchange for a handsome transfer fee (just like in FIFA soccer and the MLB post system with Japan)

    Its much better to do this than to have an entire roster of Zuffa’s sloppy seconds. If people see Nick Diaz in Strikeforce, they’ll either not remember him (from his UFC days) or they’ll think, “Nick isn’t the UFC anymore? He must have lost a step. He’s washed up.”

  17. Dave2 says:

    Alan Conceicao: You have a point Alan. It’s true that eventually we’re gonna wanna see how these young guns fare against established veterans.

    But I still think that the hot prospects should be the main focus of the promotion. The established veterans should be brought in to put the young guys over. Don’t throw Brett Rogers under a bus. Build him up to a fight with a hotshot veteran. Don’t feed the young to the hotshot veterans. No one would care if Arlovski had beat Rogers. But everyone took notice when Rogers beat Arlovski. Build your hot prospects. The established veterans don’t need any building because the general perception is that they lost a step because they are no longer in the UFC. Don’t try to out UFC the UFC. That’s like bringing a knife to a gun fight. Play a sneakier game. Carve out a niche as the prospect builder.

  18. Adam Smith says:

    What a surprise. The CSAC running a publicity campaign for itself, giving infomation to fomer UFC shill Hunt, but not Coker about the satus quo.

    Throw Diaz in the mix and it is a disaster.

    Someone needs to clean house with the incestous, unprofessional relationships in the CSAC.

    Don’t care to see the stoned, pawing trogladyte Diaz ever again. He just joined Barnett on that list.

  19. Detective Roadblock says:

    That’s exactly what Showtime dis with boxing and it worked out. They built real nice divisions up and focused on guys and weights HBO didn’t.

    It looked like Strikeforce was doing a good job with the talent Rey has at 170 and 185. But now they’re running too many shows and weight classes. It makes them seem thin talent wise.

    They have made some nice pickups though. Andre Galvao is a good example. He should be a stud. They new more guys like that. You don’t need top guys to have fun divisions. This is why I think the Fedor signing will backfire on them. He brings the pressure of havin to look and act worldclass. When really this is a strong regional show.

  20. Alan Conceicao says:

    3) If demand rises for your up-and-comers and they are still under contract with you, you could negotiate with Zuffa to sell your fighters to them in exchange for a handsome transfer fee (just like in FIFA soccer and the MLB post system with Japan)

    Right…but do you think Showtime is paying them well into 6 figures a show to build up an army of potential Amir Sadollahs? They’re being paid to provide a major league show and the obvious goal is to do that. But on a show with no name prospects and 45 will bash it. Put on a show with a mix of new faces and old ones, and 45 will bash it. Have Fedor fight anyone other than one of his annointed UFC faves, and 45 will bash it. As long as your personal end game is the UFC running MMA worldwide, Strikeforce existing as anything other than a support product is a negative. I, meanwhile, don’t care which promoter gets “win”, or if a winner even emerges. This will thus make me “negative” and a “hater”, as you’ll be reminded shortly.

  21. Dave says:

    “As for Scott Coker, he is a very smart businessman. But it seems that after the EliteXC acquisitions, Strikeforce has had to deal with many problems. It’s really horrible. It’s a train wreck. This isn’t like Coker. He’s a 20+ year fight game veteran. He’s successfully put on K-1 shows for FEG, he’s promoted kickboxing for so long, his Strikeforce promotion was going well up until now, etc. What’s going on Coker?”

    This is what I was saying the other day and was completely blown off. It is Coker having to work outside of that comfort zone and deal with so many more factors he can’t control. It is great to have Fedor and former UFC stars like Nick Diaz, but this kind of stress, last minute changes, controversy and so on comes with it.

    I really think that Coker is just working outside his comfort zone with people he doesn’t have a good working relationship with.

  22. 45 Huddle says:

    Alan,

    I disagree. A few things Strikeforce can do that would not mean “no name talent” on their cards.

    First, strengthen up their undercards. Right now, their undercards are pathetically bad. These undercards need to be the place that they give real prospects the chance to get their feet wet and ready for the main event card.

    Secondly, work with Showtime to get that undercard footage online. Through a combination of Showtime & SF’s websites, those prospects need to be showcased to the hardcore fans first. Get a little momentum in that direction. Even the hardcore fans barely know about the few up & comers they have because they don’t give us an easy way of viewing it.

    This isn’t a quick process. The Tampa Bay Devil Rays didn’t randomly get to the World Series last year. It was the cultivation of multiple seasons of good scouting and getting the right players in place to make a run at it. The problem for Strikeforce is that as a regional promoter, they weren’t really doing this well, and now they are required to do this as going head-to-head with Zuffa is beyond stupid.

    Headlining Jorge Gurgel on a ShoMMA event is exactly what I’m talking about when I say SF is doing it wrong. It gives the perception of just being a UFC washout league. Not to mention that their next two ShoMMA events have Cyborg & Billy Evanglistas as the main events. Both lost their last fights. How can you expect to build up contenders and strong prospects when this is happening? Tim Kennedy is a decent prospect. He should be in there with Luke Rockhold instead.

    One thing Joe Silva does great is that when he is trying to build up a title contender, he keeps them away from the guys who were already established in the division until the very end. Bisping got Henderson on his fight right before a potential title shot. Maia is getting Marquardt. Before that, they each got solid fights but none of the guys who were in the elite.

    The same matchmaking strategy needs to be employed in Strikeforce. Only instead of keeping the prospects away from the top contenders, they need to be kept away from the UFC washouts.

  23. jr says:

    Coker’s Tom Atencioism knows no bounds.

  24. Detective Roadblock says:

    45 is correct about that. Losing to a UFC washout takes the shine off a prospect fast. You have to be careful when you make those matchups.

    That said I’m with Alan about just wanting to see good fights. Really that’s been my only beef with SF eight now is that they aren’t giving me any fights I care about.

  25. Alan Conceicao says:

    This is what I was saying the other day and was completely blown off. It is Coker having to work outside of that comfort zone and deal with so many more factors he can’t control. It is great to have Fedor and former UFC stars like Nick Diaz, but this kind of stress, last minute changes, controversy and so on comes with it.

    I really think that Coker is just working outside his comfort zone with people he doesn’t have a good working relationship with.

    If you want to play with the big boys, this is what you’ll have to do. I have a hard time believing he didn’t have much prior contact with Cesar Gracie though. Diaz is afraid either of testing positive or of getting beat. One or the other.

  26. Dave says:

    Oh you know I’m with you, they just went from local show that does well to national attraction in the blink of an eye. The last show was kind of their coming out party, but it was more of the same, this show is the real test and what is clear is Strikeforce might need a few more hands in their offices.

  27. Alan Conceicao says:

    45 is correct about that. Losing to a UFC washout takes the shine off a prospect fast. You have to be careful when you make those matchups.

    Well, a lot of those guys are excellent benchmarks. Protecting guys from fighting the Tony Fryklunds of the world is sending the sport down a path I don’t want to see. If Strikeforce then promotes those guys as world class, I’m not foolish enough to think the 45s out there (both gimmick trolls and actual serious blawgers) would talk about how great they are. And frankly, neither are they.

    That said I’m with Alan about just wanting to see good fights. Really that’s been my only beef with SF eight now is that they aren’t giving me any fights I care about.

    Yeah, I’ll skip this weekend’s show, more than likely, and just watch what I care about later, as I’ll do UFC 101.

  28. Mark says:

    There are relative degrees on working in your competitors cast-offs. If you get some little-known fighter who washed out of TUF and act like GSP just signed a deal with you and make him the focus of your show, that’s bad for everybody. If you use his exposure mildly, don’t downgrade your homegrown talent by acting like the ex-UFC fighter is automatically more important than they are because he might have been on national television, then there’s nothing wrong with that. Use him to the point where it would be a big deal if one of your homegrown fighters were to beat him, but not enough to where everybody else on the card who wasn’t briefly with the UFC are downgraded as second-rate fighters.

  29. Alan Conceicao says:

    And to be fair to them, I don’t see how they’ve done any of that with any recent ex-UFC fighters. You look at someone like Lawler; his time in the UFC predates the current popularity of the sport and he built up a pretty solid career in the half decade since. Why should they ignore someone like him to “build from scratch” out of a pool of imagined talent? TUF goes through 32 guys and generally finds about 3 capable of being journeymen in the UFC. Imagine how many people they need to go through on 2/2 contracts to find stars.

    Also, the argument about the undercards is stupid. If no one buys for the untelevised undercard, don’t spend money there. Haven’t we been down that road before?

  30. Ivan Trembow says:

    More quality journalism from Yahoo Sports’ UFC section, courtesy of Maggie Hendricks:

    Forrest Griffin, Born to Run — according to Barnes and Noble: http://sports.yahoo.com/mma/blog/cagewriter/post/Forrest-Griffin-Born-to-Run-according-to-Bar?urn=mma,182027

    Tim Sylvia, please don’t fight again — http://sports.yahoo.com/mma/blog/cagewriter/post/Tim-Sylvia-please-don-t-fight-again?urn=mma%2C182177

  31. 45 Huddle says:

    There needs to be a happy medium on the undercard fights. Affliction paying $250,000 for a guy who will only be shown on HDNet is pointless. So is what Strikeforce is doing right now which is fill it up with too many fighters who have no chance of advancing to the main card.

    And I don’t see anything wrong with protecting a guy when he is 5-0 and fighting on the undercard. However, once he makes it to the main card 3 fights later, he needs to be polished and ready to go and at least seem like a potential title challenger in the future. Obviously not all fighters can pan out, but there at least needs to be the perception as such.

    I also think they need to reduce the number of former UFC fighters on their roster. They need to be complimentary to the rest of their roster, not the bulk of it.

  32. A. Taveras says:

    Showtime televises the best fights available to them. To my knowledge they are not building any house fighters. And they have often picked up fights by guys who, in the terminology being used here, are ‘HBO castoffs’. They simply make the best fights available.

    A label like ‘UFC castoff’ could easily become the MMA version of boxing’s albatross, the undefeated record. Let’s not go down this road. Fighters can have bad stretches, fighters can improve…let’s not start tarnishing their marketability referring to them as cast-offs. Sometimes really good fights are available between guys outside the UFC. Strikeforce should mimic the Showtime boxing strategy … sign and televise good fights and don’t get into this game of ‘building fighters’ at all.

  33. Ivan Trembow says:

    “Well, Ivan, still want to disagree with our analysis? Diaz tries to swerve the Press all weekend. Never contacts CSAC. Gets on a conference call. All pretending he’s going to fight Jay Hieron. But Diaz never wanted to fight Hieron.

    This isn’t about marijuana. This is about a bad style matchup for Diaz. Case closed.”

    So, Fedor is terrified of Belfort, and Diaz is scared of Hieron. Are there any other professional mixed martial artists that you’d like to declare cowards?

    For someone who knows so much about the situation, even more than anyone else, you’d think you would know that Diaz wasn’t on the conference call pretending that he wanted to fight Hieron. Diaz wasn’t on the conference call at all.

    The situation with Diaz is clear as day. As Cesar Gracie said to Loretta Hunt, he had a deal with Armando Garcia for Diaz to only be drug-tested on fight night. When he found out that the current CSAC regime wasn’t about to honor Garcia’s under-the-table secret deals, Diaz’ choices were to either test positive for marijuana or to not take the fight.

    Instead of being up-front about that and pulling out of the fight, Diaz and his camp BS’ed everyone (Coker, the CSAC) for almost a whole week, never flat-out saying, “He’s not going to take a drug test.” Does that mean Diaz is scared of Hieron? No. Does it mean that Diaz handled the situation in a classless way? Yes. But quite frankly, if you’ve ever heard any of his interviews, you know that Diaz handles most situations in a classless way.

  34. Mark says:

    I don’t think Diaz was afraid of Heiron, but I also don’t think he’s being honest by saying he had a deal with Garcia about the pot testing only before fights so that’s why he skipped out. There’s no way Garcia made that deal, he wouldn’t make a deal to a superstar who draws California a ton of tax money let alone Nick Diaz, a C-list fighter (and I like Nick but he is a C-list fighter.) They already said there would be no exceptions to prescription drugs, even if your doctor came to a hearing with you to say you had a valid reason for taking the banned substance, so something like marijuana is not going to be viewed as less of a problem than a guy legally getting Percocet for a tweaked knee and still getting flagged for doping.

    The truth is Diaz realized with the Barnett situation that if you aren’t licensed they can’t suspend you so you’d be able to fight in another state or another country without risking being banned forever in California. And he knew legally he’d be protected by technically not failing a drug test by no showing than he would taking it knowing it will fail. Diaz knows Strikefroce will want him as a draw on Stockton shows in the future, so this way he can come back in the future to California.

  35. Jeremy (not that Jeremy) says:

    Since someone asked above, Hep C is blood borne, basically uncurable, has no vaccine. Other than screwing up your liver slowly and permanently (which can kill you) and giving you the flu for six months, it’s not particularly severe, but it’s one of those diseases that seems to follow HIV around because of their common transmission vectors.

    It’s not something you want, and no one with it should be allowed to fight.

  36. Scott R. says:

    I don’t see anything wrong with using former UFC talent as long as the price tag isn’t too high. It’s the old pro wrestling model of bringing in outside talent to put your own guys over. The risk is obviously much higher in MMA because it isn’t a work, but you can still set up favorable style matchups. If they are planning to run major shows on CBS and Showtime, they need name fighters to draw in the casual fan. As long as they aren’t going the Affliction payment route, they should be fine. Worse case scenario is your own fighter loses, in which case maybe he wasn’t the one to build a division around to begin with.

    After I saw WEC’s payroll for their last show, it got me thinking.. If I’m Strikeforce, I would build up my 145 and 135 divisions in hopes of poaching WEC talent. Torres and Faber have already voiced displeasure with their WEC paydays. Strikeforce could make affordable offers to them, make it non-exclusive to set up big fights in Japan (and big paydays for those fighters). If I’m a 145 pound fighter, would I rather fight for average money on Versus or possibily headline shows in Japan and CBS/Showtime with bigger paydays? At the very least, it could force UFC’s hand to incorporate those division in the UFC and eliminate a competing promotion.

  37. Detective Roadblock says:

    You have to very naive to believe Diaz had a special deal, Ivan. But, ok, you are naive. We assume they had a deal. Don’t you think Diaz and Gracie would check with the new people on charge after Garcia left? It makes no sense that they wouldn’t.

    I still think Fedors management feared Vitor. Vitor immediately said he’d take the fight and Vadim says the fans don’t want to see it.

    I don’t like calling guys cowards. To me it looks like both sought to avoid opponents who were bad style matchups.

  38. Wolverine says:

    Strikeforce has depth problems with 5 divisions, adding another two would make it even worse.

  39. Scott R. says:

    They have depth issues at the five divisions they are trying to compete with the UFC against. Competing for the best talent at 145 and 135 with WEC would be much easier than competing with UFC for the best talent at 155+. Strikeforce makes way more sense for WEC fighters than it does for UFC guys.

  40. 45 Huddle says:

    Going after the 145 & 135 divisions isn’t a bad idea. It’s Zuffa’s worst paying divisions.

    However, I do get the feeling that if Zuffa sensed this would occur, they would just up the pay for these fighters and take it as a loss. And then when the TV contracts are right, they would just merge the UFC & WEC….

    Plus as mentioned by Wolverine, this would spread them very thin. 7 male divisions and 3 female divisions would make it impossible to build up any sort of fighters who aren’t the champions.

    It wouldn’t be stupid for them to cut the Light Heavyweight Division. After Mousasi/Babalu, I can’t think of a legit title fight in that division outside of the UFC.

  41. Mark says:

    But there’s not much of an audience for 135-145 due to little depth. WEC is more than enough, since the division isn’t that deep anywhere and it’s so new to the majority of viewers they aren’t trained to expect it yet. To see those weights once a month is enough right now. And if you want more, you can track down Japanese fights.

    On the other hand, the 155-265 weights are expected by every fight fan to exist in any promotion, skipping on one of them is not acceptable. And creating new weight classes for novelty clearly doesn’t work either, since people hated Elite toying with weightclasses. People want 155, 170, 185, 205 and 265. And just because the division isn’t that deep right now doesn’t mean they should scrap it, who knows if a wave of fighters in any weightclass would rise up. It would have been much harder for UFC to have made the HW division what it is today if you scrapped it from 2004-07.

  42. Fred says:

    Scott Coker has too much on his plate. Obviously, he has been spending time on the Fedor negotiations and the “co-promotion” with M-1, and it may be pulling him away from regular shows that need his attention. It was pretty important to ensure that Diaz was ready for this card, and that has completely fallen apart now.

    What all the other failed promotions have shown throughout the years (WFA, BoDog, EXC, Affliction, etc.) is that you can’t build a successful, international promotion around one or two top fighters while ignoring the every day work involved in your regular cards. To have Nick Diaz not test (with no replacement fighter in sight) with 3 days to go is beyond incompetence.

    Coker is not normally an incompetent guy, he’s just overloaded right now, largely because of trying to be M-1’s shoeshine boy. It’s just not going to work. Fedor is not a big enough draw to justify the time and financial resources being committed to him by a promotions which doesn’t have those resources. Wouldn’t be surprised at all if Strikeforce is completely out of business or at least severely crippled in 2 years or less.

    When will these promoters learn. M-1 and Fedor (as good as he is) are not worth the effort.

  43. Alan Conceicao says:

    No one complained about the 205lb belt when it was Anthony Ruiz/Bobby Southworth II for the title, except I suppose, me. Its a meaningless paper belt, but if there’s fights every few months that aren’t so bad around it, I can deal with its existence.

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