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Strikeforce 1/30 Sunrise, Florida

By Zach Arnold | January 30, 2010

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A lot of NFL stars were in attendance at tonight’s Strikeforce event, including New York Jets HC Rex Ryan. Jay Glazer brought several Pro Bowl players to the event in Sunrise.

Thoughts on the show

Go to full-page view if you don’t want spoilers.

The Herschel Walker freak-show experiment worked…

…in terms of media attention. I was paying attention to Twitter during the fight and it never seemed like the chattering would end on Walker’s squash match. I know the Atlanta Journal-Constitution has been riding the Herschel bandwagon hard and it looks like, for media attention, they were onto something.

As for a fight? It went as expected. Put it in perspective.

The media outlets in Dallas and Georgia tonight are going crazy with Herschel coverage. The Georgia Bulldog faithful is sure a passionate bunch.

The biggest celebrity at the show was…

Rex Ryan, naturally. Miami/New York as a football rivalry will always carry weight, even after all these years when the Jets passed up on drafting Dan Marino and instead took Ken O’Brien.

A close second was Georges St. Pierre, which goes to show you how fortunate UFC is right now to have two mega-stars in Brock Lesnar and Georges St. Pierre. If BJ Penn continues high-profile domination for a year more, he may end up in that same mega-level star class.

Dan Henderson’s star power was also off the charts. That win over Michael Bisping at UFC 100 really vaulted his star power up big time.

Strikeforce’s big concern

The guys who got reaction on tonight’s show were all UFC or ex-UFC guys. That says that the promotion itself isn’t strong in terms of making new stars or having the brand power to help fighters elevate their star power to the next level.

Strikeforce’s biggest star attractions? Gina Carano (still) and Herschel Walker. Oh yes.

Topics: Media, MMA, StrikeForce, Zach Arnold | 117 Comments » | Permalink | Trackback |

117 Responses to “Strikeforce 1/30 Sunrise, Florida”

  1. Grape Knee High says:

    Fine, don’t call it overpaying then. Zuffa doesn’t want to pay these fighters what they want, rightly or wrongly.

    No amount of fanboy bellyaching will ever change this.

  2. Alan Conceicao says:

    Which brings us back to the original point: Thinking that the UFC is probably on the verge of stealing all of SF’s guys is hoping for something that won’t happen.

  3. Grape Knee High says:

    LOL, your point or something else’s point? Wanting to maintain a certain cost structure to their business is a perfectly valid reason for not fulfilling every fanboy’s dreams, whether you agree or not.

  4. Alan Conceicao says:

    LOL, your point or something else’s point? Wanting to maintain a certain cost structure to their business is a perfectly valid reason for not fulfilling every fanboy’s dreams, whether you agree or not.

    The UFC can do whatever it wants to. Obviously it doesn’t ask me or anyone else here what they think during contract negotiations. I just think its hilarious that because its the UFC, it’s okay. It places them beyond criticism, because now whoever doesn’t sign with them or complains with them is at fault. I’m not sure how they managed adults to get to think that way, but its incredible nonetheless.

  5. Grape Knee High says:

    It places them beyond criticism, because now whoever doesn’t sign with them or complains with them is at fault. I’m not sure how they managed adults to get to think that way, but its incredible nonetheless.

    This is exactly why trying to have a civil, rational discussion is nearly impossible. Because you are neither civil nor rational.

    Please tell me where I said it places the UFC beyond criticism. What I said is maintaining cost structures is a valid business reason; businesses do it all the time.

    Does it make it “right”? No. But what started this entire digression is your bizarre statement:

    “Competition will always exist because they allow it to for reasons that aren’t entirely clear to me.”

    It’s only not clear to you because you refuse to see the evidence in front of your face. Just because you don’t agree with it doesn’t mean that’s not what the UFC is doing.

  6. Grape Knee High says:

    Just to add one more thing, Alan. Your paranoid delusions that anyone who dares to disagree with you must be a brainwashed UFC fanboy is hilarious.

    I used to think you were a dick, but an intelligent one. Now it’s obvious you’re just a “intellectual” bully with no substance.

    Have a good day.

  7. Alan Conceicao says:

    This is exactly why trying to have a civil, rational discussion is nearly impossible. Because you are neither civil nor rational.

    It is difficult, I admit, to give civil responses to insane viewpoints.

    Please tell me where I said it places the UFC beyond criticism.

    You didn’t state that. However, what you’re describing is, in fact, a situation where there is no room for criticism, because they can just dish out whatever justification they please. Ayn Rand would be proud.

    It’s only not clear to you because you refuse to see the evidence in front of your face.

    You’re right. I do realize that they’re greedy fight promoters no different than any of the other ones that have come and gone throughout the years. I really wish it wasn’t that way, but it is. Still, I wish they were a little greedier and more egocentric in some areas. The sport would be better off.

  8. Grape Knee High says:

    It is difficult, I admit, to give civil responses to insane viewpoints.

    LOL, you drew back out with this one; I have to admit it got me laughing. I’m saying the UFC just wants to control its budget and you are saying I am the crazy one! The internet is an amazing place.

    You didn’t state that. However, what you’re describing is, in fact, a situation where there is no room for criticism, because they can just dish out whatever justification they please.

    Your intellectual insincerity shows no bounds.

    Again, I never said there was no room for criticism. You’d hear not a peep from me if you just wanted to lambast White for being cheap. He probably is in many cases, and shows too much largesse in others.

    But, you, on the hand basically said “Durrr….me don’t unnastand what Zuffa doing…” When someone explains it to you, you explode in your usual impotent rage.

  9. Alan Conceicao says:

    LOL, you drew back out with this one; I have to admit it got me laughing. I’m saying the UFC just wants to control its budget and you are saying I am the crazy one! The internet is an amazing place.

    Of course they do! What company doesn’t? The problem is that poaching fighters doesn’t take their ability to control expenditures away.

    Again, I never said there was no room for criticism.

    However, there’s plenty of rationalization. It must be the due diligence they’ve done, right?

  10. Alan Conceicao says:

    Really, that was Oh Yeah that made mention of the UFC’s apparent work on determining its value, not you. I still hold to that point though; Whatever the UFC does, there is a point of rationalization re: BIZ BIZ BIZ. In your case, you hold to the disconnected point of “controlling payroll”. But there’s no real connection there between the act of talent signing and the lack of such control or leverage.

  11. Grape Knee High says:

    However, there’s plenty of rationalization. It must be the due diligence they’ve done, right?

    Rationalization? Not from me. This is not an issue I even really care about.

    You asked why. Since I thought you were being sincere, I answered, just for the conversation. You didn’t like the answer and then you got in your usual impotent rage mode and accused me of being a UFC shill, as you seem to do with everyone that disagrees with you.

    And since you seem to need explicit disclosures for everything: I don’t think Zuffa seem like especially astute or intelligent business men. But, over the years, they’ve made pretty clear what cost structures they seem to generally follow.

    In your case, you hold to the disconnected point of “controlling payroll”. But there’s no real connection there between the act of talent signing and the lack of such control or leverage.

    Sigh.

    It does if you’re changing your cost structure to do it. If you were ever in a position to decide on people’s salaries you’d understand this point. You watch other sports. You don’t think Larry Fitzgerald’s new contract had anything to do with Anquan Boldin’s demands at the beginning of last season? Really?

    If we’re not under the same basic assumption that the UFC would have to change their employee cost structure to “sign everyone”, then there’s no point in further discussion.

    But, it doesn’t seem to me that this is what you believe though. Seems from your posts that you actually believe that — and excuse me for using a baseball expression here — if Zuffa starts busting slot consistently, there will be no long-term salary inflation. I wholly disagree with this, assuming that I am interpreting your posts correctly.

  12. Alan Conceicao says:

    It does if you’re changing your cost structure to do it.

    Changing your cost structure doesn’t mean you lose control of your payroll. Arizona could have traded or released Boldin if they want to with the NFL’s lack of guaranteed contracts, but chose to resign him rather than seek out a draft pick or free agent to replace him.

  13. Grape Knee High says:

    Changing your cost structure doesn’t mean you lose control of your payroll.

    It doesn’t necessarily mean losing control, but it does mean your costs go up. You want the UFC to carry more fighters, and at higher salaries. Not every fighter will get a raise by demanding one. But just as in other sports, some of them will.

    I get that you think in the long-term, their costs are controlled because once they’ve crushed all their competition, they have more leverage than ever.

    Problem is that it doesn’t work that way. As long as there is still money to be made in MMA, the cockroaches with money will come in to fill that void and they’ll pick up whatever scraps the UFC throws away (since, again, they realistically can’t sign everyone) or never had any interest in.

    Most competitors come and go. Everyone that tries to compete with the UFC on their payscale, historically, get bought out or go under because paying at UFC-type salaries while grossing a pittance of the UFC’s gross is not viable long-term.

    The UFC knows this; no matter how stupid they seem, that can’t be THAT stupid to not know this.

    With a true competitor, the UFC has already done something similar to what you are suggesting: the signing of Cro-Cop. They signed him at a higher salary than they really wanted to partially to crush PRIDE, and partially as an investment. I can’t imagine that they really thought they were getting $350,000 worth of PPVs from a guy only hardcore fans knew about.

    If another competitor like PRIDE comes along, I would imagine Zuffa would do what you’re suggesting. Until then, it looks like they’re happy to ride the minor upstarts out until one of them becomes dangerous.

  14. Jonathan says:

    This thread needs to be locked I think.

  15. Alan Conceicao says:

    It doesn’t necessarily mean losing control, but it does mean your costs go up.

    Exactly. So why argue a “loss of control”? Its mutually exclusive.

    Problem is that it doesn’t work that way. As long as there is still money to be made in MMA, the cockroaches with money will come in to fill that void and they’ll pick up whatever scraps the UFC throws away (since, again, they realistically can’t sign everyone) or never had any interest in.

    And do you think CBS or Showtime is going to bury millions into MMA product based around Joe Stevenson? No, they won’t. This isn’t football, where the size of the fanbase is such that its imagined that a second organization can survive and provide decent ratings. Furthermore, over time, they can re-establish how they want to do payroll. If Yushin Okami doesn’t like that Robbie Lawler and Jake Shields are getting paid more, guess what? He’s totally expendable. No one will build around him and invest millions in him, and he and his management will know that.

    With a true competitor, the UFC has already done something similar to what you are suggesting: the signing of Cro-Cop.

    That’s signing *A* fighter, which was followed by the totally botched purchase of PRIDE once it had broken down, crashed, and burnt as their way of conquering the sport. Their failure there is what allowed EXC, DREAM, Strikeforce, and Sengoku to come into existence.

  16. Grape Knee High says:

    Exactly. So why argue a “loss of control”? Its mutually exclusive.

    Why semantics with you all time?

    Zuffa doesn’t seem to want to spend the extra money to get keep these fighters. Whether you want to call it “control” or “budgeting” it all amounts to the same thing. They don’t want to spend the extra money to “corner the market” as you’re suggesting.

    And do you think CBS or Showtime is going to bury millions into MMA product based around Joe Stevenson? No, they won’t.

    Of course. And that’s also exactly why Zuffa won’t pay more than they want to for Melendez. Because he’s not worth it, the same way Stevenson is not worth it.

    I’m not saying competition will be successful. Just that it will always exists if the margins are there; might be big competitors or small. But they will be there no matter how many fighters the UFC tries to sign.

    Their failure there is what allowed EXC, DREAM, Strikeforce, and Sengoku to come into existence.

    DREAM, for sure. They screwed the pooch on that big time. Don’t know if I agree about the other orgs. But that is neither here nor there, since we’re not arguing about Zuffa’s competence. I’m just supplying some evidence that the idea of signing fighters to hurt another organization is not foreign to Zuffa.

  17. Zack says:

    45 Huddle Says:

    Hieron is at the end of his contract. The problem is that he signed with EA Sports, so the UFC won’t touch him. “

    Another 45 Fail.

    Trigg was just announced as being in the EA Sports game and he’s on the UFC PPV this Saturday.

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