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« | Home | »

Scott Coker’s feeling the sting from media criticism over bad PR this week

By Zach Arnold | January 15, 2011

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What was supposed to be a banner week for Scott Coker and Strikeforce to roll out the PR for the upcoming Heavyweight tournament turned out to be a mess. Josh Barnett decided to not schedule attendance for a final meeting with the California State Athletic Commission, leading Dave Meltzer to call for Mr. Barnett to get kicked out of the tournament. That, in and of itself, was quite remarkable given that Dave is in the San Jose area and well-connected with the people in the promotion. Mr. Coker tried to pour water on that situation by claiming that he would do his own drug testing of Josh Barnett before and after fights. In response, he got blasted in media circles for commission shopping and drew comparisons to Bob Arum with Antonio Margarito.

However, the biggest criticism came on Thursday when the Strikeforce promoter rolled out the tournament rules. In the weeks leading up to the announcement, Mr. Coker himself talked about a desire for the title to be on the line during the Heavyweight tournament and for five-round fights. In other words, just like he did with the proposed Middleweight tournament that never came about last year, he told the fans one thing and set the expectations to a certain level. Which, of course, meant that when he announced the tournament fights would be three rounders and Alistair Overeem’s HW title wouldn’t be on the line, a lot of people were either disappointed or angry.

Even more troubling is the fact that Josh Gross called out Scott Coker on Strikeforce’s conference call and said that he talked to several athletic commissioners from states that Strikeforce has promoted shows at in the past and those commissioners reportedly told him that they were OK with doing five round fights.

Take that all into consideration as the background for this radio interview yesterday where Mauro Ranallo, the main PBP guy for Strikeforce on Showtime, interviewed Scott Coker about the tournament and the reaction in the media to the way things have played out. (Listen to the audio of the interview here starting at the 25-minute time mark.)

MAURO RANALLO: “Can you clarify and bring us to speed on why the belt will not be up for grabs and why the tournament (bouts) are not five five-minute rounds?”

SCOTT COKER: “Yeah. You know, Mauro, I think that’s already been hashed out, over and over yesterday and through the media call. I mean, here’s the thing… when we announced this tournament, we always announce, we always let the media know that, listen, this could be a situation where, uh… you know depending on what the commissions allow us to do, that it would be just like a, you know, tournament from Japan where there is an independent champion and not the (original) champion. That’s what’s going to unfold here.

“And, to me, I’ve seen some of the headlines today and it just seems silly. I mean, this is going to be a fantastic tournament. Even Fedor said it yesterday, this will be as good or better than any PRIDE, which I think set the bar you know 10 years ago, as good or better than any PRIDE tournament he’s ever competed in and, hey, let these guys go fight and let it be what it is. You know, we’re going to end up with a Strikeforce World Grand Prix tournament champion and I’m actually happy and then he’ll go on to fight Alistair at that point, and if it Alistair then he gets to say he’s The Baddest Man on the Planet and there’ll be somebody in the tournament he didn’t fight and we’ll let them get it on. So, you know, to me it just seems, you know, we’ve already been through and, you know, I just… I just don’t understand what the reaction in the media is.”

MAURO RANALLO: “I can empathize with you, Scott, obviously but I guess where there is some question. We had Josh Gross on earlier from ESPN.com, saying that you know in Strikeforce saying that the commissions won’t allow us to have five five-minute rounds that he’s saying that Nick Lembo of the New Jersey commission said that it was never even brought up. And I’m just wondering, is it a case of where obviously Strikeforce wants to do something innovative…”

SCOTT COKER: “Here’s the thing, right? Josh does what he does because that’s who he is, right? So I’m not going to, you know, I’m not going to justify to Josh or anybody else. Listen, Nick Lembo, of course he’s going to listen to it, he’s going to be the last guy that we have to have that conversation with. It’s really down the line and, you know, finding a guy or a commission that, you know, will allow us to do the five-minute rounds for the future tournament fights but it also has to be in a state that, you know, let’s face it, that Josh Barnett will be allowed to compete in and then, you know, so that narrows the field down but it’s still six or eight states, future fights that we have to have an agreement with all these commissions and it just didn’t happen and we’re running out of time, so we have to move forward and, to me, we move forward and, you know, if Josh doesn’t like it, that’s up to him.”

What was revealing about the radio interview is that the usually even-keeled Mr. Coker showed that he was stung by the media criticism and the way he has been challenged. Whether there has been damage done or not remains to be seen, but for the short-term clearly he thinks the media talk has not been good for him.

Later on the interview, Mr. Coker said statements like:

However, what I took away from the radio interview was that even though he was talking to someone who was in his corner and very friendly to him, Mr. Coker was most definitely on the defensive here. You can say statements that sound bold, but if you don’t have the confidence to back it up the fans can tell.

February 12th at the Izod Center in New Jersey

Topics: Media, MMA, StrikeForce, Zach Arnold | 68 Comments » | Permalink | Trackback |

68 Responses to “Scott Coker’s feeling the sting from media criticism over bad PR this week”

  1. Chuck says:

    All heavyweight show? This will be either a great card or a stinker (besides Fedor/Silva and possible Arlovski/Kharitonov). Hey, it’s in Jersey, so maybe I’ll make the trip over there (I’m from Pa). But I will be watching this event one way or another. I still think the Overeem/Werdum fight being non-title is retarded, but what can ya do? I guess keep on with the bitching and moaning, hoping Coker will change his mind.

  2. Phil says:

    Why would New Jersey be the last place he would talk to? Who cares if they won’t license Barnett, you already have a card with 5 tournament fights booked there. Them giving Barnett a license doesn’t really factor into play, when they are already hosting other tournament fights.

    Just say you changed your mind. You are caught in the lie, coming clean instead of sticking with the lie will work out better in the long run.

  3. Nicholai says:

    Is it me or is the Shane Del Rosario/Lavar Johnson the most competitive fight on the card and it is only a reserve fight.
    Still lookin forward to seeing the outcomes of the fights but not having showtime won’t hurt much. Glad I can get Bellator and UFC easliy in Canada.

  4. Joseph says:

    Nicholai,

    SuperChannel shows Strikeforce in Canada.

    As for the tourney, the fans and media have gone a bit to far. The tournament has only been announced for a few days and people already want to call it a failure and that it’s in shambes. It’s ridiculous, one fight hasn’t even happened yet. How about we let some of the fights actually happen before we kick up the criticism a notch? I mean we still have the rest of 2011 to criticize if things start to unravel.

    It’s amazing to see how much fans and media have invested in nitpicking the smallest of details on items that may not ever come into play.

    Just sit back and enjoy, we have plenty of time to complain.

    • Phil says:

      The entire thing is an overreaction. People overreacted about how great the announcement was, and now they’re overreacting to percieved problems to the tournament.

      The point of it all is that mma fans and the media can turn at a moment’s notice. SF should have kept their mouths shut until everything was planned and announced the tournament, with the correct details, when they were all finalized.

    • Nicholai says:

      I’ll have to look into it, See what channels are on Rogers cable package. Thanks

  5. Ryan says:

    Seriously, can anything Strikeforce do actually please people! Wish the media would quite drumming up constant negative critisizm and give these guys a break.
    They have just annouced the biggest HW tournment since the days of Pride and are clearly trying to move forward in the right direction. Of course there are going to be problems along the way, but it all part of progression.
    I’m not fickle enough to let things like this stop me looking forward to the tournment!

    • Isaiah says:

      It’s truly bizarre. I really get the impression that Internet fans don’t care about actually, you know, watching fights. Maybe it’s just that people think they sound smart by whining about business decisions that have no impact on the fan experience and conjecturing about aspects of the business about which there is almost no visibility. Helps’em pretend that they’re “insiders.”

      • 45 Huddle says:

        How do they not have an impact on fan’s experiences?

        Without Strikeforce, 90% of the Top 25 Heavyweights would be fighting in the UFC. With Strikeforce currently in business, the UFC has about 17 or so of the Top 25 guys.

        So as a fan, it certainly effects us.

        Nothing to do about being an insider. I don’t think any of us think we are insiders.

        • Isaiah says:

          So you think you can whine SF out of existence? That if you pretend on the internet to know that they are in financial trouble and complain about the minutest issues, all the HW talent in the world will go to the UFC? I never understood before how all your time spent here is part of an effort to help set up big fights for us fans to enjoy. You’re a true American Hero.

        • I think its very clear that he wants, as best he can, to do exactly that. As the guy who’s been most consistently critical of Strikeforce since day one, it’s gonna be funny to see people start calling me a “fanboy” or something for not hating a tournament that hasn’t happened yet.

      • Mr. Roadblock says:

        I’d like to watch something that’s, you know, meaningful and makes sense.

        The Overeem/Fedor side of the bracket is exciting to me. I don’t want to see Werdum/Overeem or the winner of that fight vs Fedor/Silva go to the judges after three rounds.

        • Isaiah says:

          How does a fight not “make sense”? Fights are good or bad. You can say that matchmaking doesn’t make sense, but what you guys are whining about is that non-title fights are going to be three rounds, which is always the case in MMA.

        • mr. roadblock says:

          You must not have done very well on reading comprehension tests.

          I do not want to see ‘all’ fights in the tourney be 5-rounds. Only the ones involving the champion.

          In round 1 that would be Werdum/Overeem.

          In the semis it would be Werdum/Overeem winner vs Fedor/Silva winner. The final would be a 5-round affair as well.

          It does not make any sense to have Overeem who is the champion of SF fight when his belt is not on the line.

        • Isaiah says:

          “You must not have done very well on reading comprehension tests.

          I do not want to see ‘all’ fights in the tourney be 5-rounds. Only the ones involving the champion.”

          Ironic, considering I said nothing about “all fights.” Overeem/Werdum is a non-title fight. The winner of Overeem/Werdum against the winner of Fedor/Silva is a non-title fight. You’re whining about them not being five rounds. Non-title fights are never five rounds in MMA. And you don’t like non-title fights involving the champ. That’s great. Doesn’t mean that Overeem vs. Werdum doesn’t make sense.

  6. Fightlinker says:

    I don’t see many people calling it a shambles – they’re just rightly pointing out that what we were told last week isn’t what we got this week. The overall tournament is still good, it’s just a lot of the small stuff that’s kinda been dicked with

  7. 45 Huddle says:

    It is easy to see why people are so quick to put down this tournament. It’s because they have no faith in Scott Coker and when he starts to change his story before the first fight happens, it’s getting fans expecting the worst. This is the same company that:

    1) Had CBS handed to them on a platter and they messed it up. CBS is the most popular station in America.

    2) Was the premiere “league” with EA MMA, and that game was a complete failure. EA is the biggest video game company.

    3) Their biggest ratings show on Showtime in 2 years was a main event that was 100% packaged for them and delivered on a silver platter. That was Cyborg/Carano. They have been completely incapable of putting on their own “big” (for Showtime) show. That includes completely stagnant ratings on their “Championship” shows over 2 years and have showed no progress.

    hmmmmmm…. So I wonder why people are down when they hear about Coker changing his story on the tournament within 2 weeks of announcing it.

    Coker has programmed people to be disappointed in his product. Fans still think the worst is to come as Overeem/Werdum doesn’t even have an official date, Barnett might not be able to get sanctioned, and who knows what else could be around the corner.

  8. 45 Huddle says:

    And what is so special about that card? It’s all Heavyweights?

    Del Rosario is a solid prospect. But everybody expects him to win.

    Fedor/Silva is a solid fight, but once again everybody expects him to win. Look at the betting spreads. It proves it.

    Arlovski is washed up and Sergei hasn’t been relevent for years!!

    I see a lot of people saying this is one of the best cards they have seen. You have to be joking. This isn’t even the best card of February 2011.

    This reminds me a lot of how the internet faithful got all hyped up about the Afflication cards and calling them stacked. Barnett vs. Rizzo was stacked? Barnett vs. Yvel was stacked? What makes a card good is too things. First is higher level talent. This card has some but not overflowing. The second is hard to predict fights. This card has very few.

    • Chuck says:

      But the Affliction show still turned out great. And I would dispute having “higher level talent” as being a must for a card to be great. How many WEC and Bellator events (or even King Of The Cage and the like) events have there been with nothing but B and C level fighters turning out extremely entertaining because most of the fights were awesome scraps? Higher level talent is definitely a plus, but not always a prerequisite.

      Hell, look at the Ring Magazine fights of the years (had to pluralize) throughout the years. Yeah most of them were title fights on HBO or Showtime or HBO PPV. You know what won Fight Of The Year 2001? Mickey Ward Vs. Emmanuel Augustus, which was on ESPN2. The other fight that was pretty much the runner up and was also in the running for fight of the year that year? Julio Gonzalez vs. Julian Letterlough, also on ESPN2. Letterlough and Gonzalez were complete nobodies at the time (Gonzalez, who won, went on to being a top ten fighter at light heavyweight and Letterlough only fought once on HBO losing to Vassily Jirov then was shot to death because he tried to break up a fight). Ward was kind of known, mostly on undercards of ppvs and HBO telecasts, and Augustus was pretty much just a journey-man on ESPN2 events (fun fact. Augustus holds the record for having the most amount of fights on ESPN/ESPN2. Second place? Mickey Ward).

      Then in 2002 and 2003 Mickey Ward was in both years’ fights of the year from RING, both fights against Arturo Gatti. Gatti has been in other fights of the year from RING before that, and he will probably never be in top 50 or top 100 all time great boxers lists.

      Here’s the rule; for a card to be great, it needs this…….great fights. What you mentioned are prerequisites for great fights ON PAPER. BIG difference. And I have the opinion that the first Affliction show exceeded expectations because pretty much all the fights were really fun to watch. Remember, match-making is an art form, not a science.

      I can agree, to an extent, on your second point, being hard-to-predict fights. But even still; a great fight is a great fight, regardless if the outcome is obvious or not.

      • 45 Huddle says:

        You really thought the Affliction cards were great? I was bored with the majority of the cards since I knew the winners before the fights happened. The main events were definitely fun to watch.

        As for the WEC…. A lot of their cards were stacked with Top 10 talent. And Bellator has been more boring then anything else during their 3rd season.

        Sure any fight can end up being “fight of the year”…. But that doesn’t change the fact that this Strikeforce card isn’t anything special and has no real 50/50 pick’em fights on them.

        • Jonathan says:

          Stop being a hater 45 Huddle.Truth be told, you would hate this card no matter what was on it, and you’re going to trash the results unless Fedor and/or Overeem loses, which will then let you revel in your delight.

          Also, someone posed the question to Jordan Breen on his radio show this week about how Strikeforce is splitting the talent between the two big organizations.

          He said that was fallacious logic, and that if Strikeforce were not around, another organization would pop up in their place.

        • 45 Huddle says:

          If Showtime stopped having MMA…. Who would sign all of those Heavyweights?

          Japan? Nope!

          Bellator? They don’t have the money!

          Breen’s argument works if the MMA market was fluid. It’s not. There is nobody to replace Showtime except the UFC.

        • Chuck says:

          I actually more meant WEC circa 2007 or so, when they first hit Versus and still had a light heavyweight division. Most of the fighters were considered B and C level fighters, but man were those shows awesome!

          And Bellator…..yeah the third season wasn’t that great, but that second season was, for the most part, great. The Jeff Curran fights were always entertaining. And Toby Imada is really fun to watch. And I already said this Strikeforce card isn’t anything great on paper (it was the very first post on this thread) but anything can happen. We’ll see…

        • If Showtime stopped having MMA…. Who would sign all of those Heavyweights?

          Who knows? Why are you sitting here arguing about some shit that isn’t happening?

          It sounds to me that you want Showtime to stop promoting MMA, regardless of the circumstances. Given that, there’s no reason to take you seriously.

  9. bluerosekiller says:

    And you just long for the day that the UFC has a complete monopoly on the sport & Dana & the boys reign supreme. Right?

    • 45 Huddle says:

      All major fighters under Zuffa then a fighters union to help create a checks and balances.

      It’s the best for the fans. All of the best being forced to fight each other. That’s a good thing. Something never had in 100+ years. A league that completely gets rid of the type of stuff we see in boxing with Floyd and Manny or Vlady and Hayes.

      There isn’t much of a down side as long as there is a fighters union in place.

      • 45 Huddle says:

        Something BOXING never had in 100+ years….

        • Isaiah says:

          There’s a reason for that. The structure of the sport just isn’t conducive to unionization. Aside from that, you’re assuming that the UFC wants to sign all the good fighters in the world and run itself like some kind of sports league. They’re promoters. They don’t want that. So the alternative is co-promotion. Not necessarily, “the UFC and M-1 Present: Fedor vs. Cain.” But guys with other promoters appearing on UFC cards and vice versa.

          Ugh. But here I go getting sucked into discussing BS that has nothing to do with fighting…

        • 45 Huddle says:

          1 organization to rule them all is a 10 times better way to run the sport then co-promotion.

          Just look at Strikeforce/Bellator as a perfect example of why it fails so badly. Too many different interests at hand.

          When try all fight under one banner it’s a unified front. Everything is for the greater good of the sport. And of course one organization isn’t perfect. No system is. But it’s the best.

          And boxing could never do it because they never had a company basically running the sport from the beginning. MMA has that chance….

        • Isaiah says:

          One dominant promoter is great in theory, but it won’t happen. For one thing, no promoter would want it to. For another, it’s just not a stable situation. It’s not like a sports league, where if someone is unhappy or is good but not useful to the organization he’s with, there are 30 or so other organizations he can sign with and remain in the league.

          So the alternative is to not see some big fights or to try to use propaganda to downgrade the public perception of the uncooperative parties so we’re convinced that we’re seeing the biggest fights even when we’re not.

        • 45 Huddle says:

          That’s what the union is there for. To give fighters balance from wrongfully be terminated and setting up a better system in which a fighter can be terminated.

        • Isaiah says:

          Fighters aren’t employees, though. They’re independent contractors. You can’t force a promoter to promote fighters that it doesn’t want to promote. How would that even work? The best the fighters could hope for would be some kind of compensation for being dropped, but that’s a small consolation.

        • 45 Huddle says:

          A union can also help with the “employment status” of fighters.

          All it would take is 10 fighters to agree to terms. The right 10 fighters. Their biggest names. And the rest would easily follow.

          Once they have strength in numbers, the fighters are on an even playing field.

        • Mark says:

          You are being so naive it isn’t even funny.

          Unions only have power in sports if the stars are with them. You can’t just say “Well, 13 guys are on board, so we’re all unionized.” And GSP, Lesnar, Silva, ect. aren’t going to risk missing a million buck pay day in their prime by going on strike so some guy coming from TUF can make more money. If the non-stars go on strike to protest their union not being recognized, so what? What leverage would they have? There are a thousand fighters out there who would love to be a scab and take their place. And then these guys would get starved out and give in.

          And you know damn well the internet would be flooded with people ranting against the guys on strike for being selfish, biting the hand that feeds, and needing to realize Dana and not a Fighter’s Union leader calling the shots is what is best for the sport.

          It is just absolutely absurd to look at Zuffa’ track record and then say they wouldn’t get nasty with guys pushing for a union. These are the same people who acted like a damn video game was a code red threat to the world.

      • Mark says:

        Come on. Do you honestly believe Zuffa would tolerate a Union? Having the owner come out and say “You don’t need it” is code for “Not gunna happen, boys.” It would never, ever happen, even if every fighter in the world joined the UFC.

        You know very well it would turn into whomever tries to lead it being an issue. It would be run by somebody who Dana doesn’t like, like Frank Shamrock, or Pat Miletich, or Ed Soares, or Monty Cox. I can hear Dana now: “We’ll accept a Union, but we just can’t trust so-and-so. How about nominating Chuck Liddell for the leadership role?”

        • 45 Huddle says:

          They legally can’t stop a union from happening if the fighters really want it.

        • Isaiah says:

          They can’t stop it, but they can just not work with anyone in the union and basically say, “good luck promoting your own fights, guys.”

        • 45 Huddle says:

          If all UFC fighters are in a uniOn that would be impossible for them to do.

        • Chuck says:

          If pro wrestlers in the eighties (Jesse Ventura and Roddy Piper have always been big proponents of a wrestlers’ union) couldn’t get unionized, then what makes you think UFC fighters can do it now? Does Zuffa even have enough money to pay out for retired fighters’ pensions? If it won’t be Zuffa to deal with that, then who will pay out? It’s completely unrealistic to think all (or even more than half of) fighters would join a fighters’ union. There absolutely be a fighters’ union, but fat chance of it happening. Isaiah is right; if a bunch of fighters try to unionize than Zuffa would probably just release them to send a message. Case in point, look at what happened to Randy Couture. He tried to leave UFC and took them to court, and was not fighting for over a year. He had no choice BUT to come back.

          And to pay for this union and a retired fighters’ pension the fighters would have to pay a certain amount of money to the union. Good luck getting fighters to do that. They have to pay out in taxes and their cornermen as it is. More money lost would be unfathomable to most fighters.

  10. Ryan says:

    Its easy to see why those of a negative disposition towards anything NON UFC are quick to put down this tournament. On the other hand it is also easy to understand why people can see positive things happening in MMA outside the bubble of one promotion.
    Every promotion can be seen as a product. In the case of Strikeforce they are still very much in development. Whereas the UFC has had years of trial and error to build, grow and define their product.
    In my opinion the HW tournment can only be seen as a step in progress for Strikeforce. This is new territory for them and inevitably there are decisions which will be seen as right or wrong. This is all part of defining their product and gaining further recognition as one of the leading MMA promotions in the world.
    Can you imagine how boring the world would be with only one product to choose from in a sport as vast as MMA? I don\’t want to be labelled as a UFC fan because I love MMA as a sport. Its like saying im a just Premiership fan when in reality I enjoy all Football/Soccer.
    Personally, I will be looking forward to the tournment and the next year of progress for Strikeforce and the sport of MMA as a whole.

    • 45 Huddle says:

      There is no upside to Showtime. They can’t promote boxing properly. They have failed at MMA for 3 years to get any traction.

    • robthom says:

      “Its easy to see why those of a negative disposition towards anything NON UFC are quick to put down this tournament. On the other hand it is also easy to understand why people can see positive things happening in MMA outside the bubble of one promotion.”

      Hmmm, its easy to see that people who are so negative towards what I like are NON WHAT I LIKE!
      Because they are quick to put down the things that I like!
      Although on the other hand its very easy to see that what I like is really very likable compared to them.

      • robthom says:

        “…negative disposition towards anything NON UFC…”

        What do you like?

        What are you negative negative towards?

        That might be simpler!

        Do you like MMA?

        To what degree would you describe your admiration for Japanese culture?

        Do you like UFC?

        ^^
        Those last 3 might put us in easier boxes.

        • Isaiah says:

          I hope the guy is above responding to this nonsense. I would think anyone posting here likes MMA in general and the UFC specifically. It would pretty weird for a non-MMA fan to come to this site at all, and pretty weird for an MMA fan not to like the best MMA promoter. The second question is pretty ridiculous, too.

  11. Paradoxx says:

    He think’s its bad now?

    Just wait till the first contract dispute or injury.

    I guarantee that at least 1 major fight won’t happen for some reason

  12. jdavis says:

    I really want to be excited for this tournament but Strikeforce keeps getting in the way. From the odd bracketing to their complete confusion on whether they were going to show five round fights or not or whether the belt will be on the line or not(why bracket them this way if the belt isn’t on the line?) to them deciding that they needed to invent a judging system for a fourth judge in case of a draw and this 5 person committee to decide what to do if someone can’t move forward(isn’t that why you have a reserve fight?) to the fact that Overeem could come out of this being the number one contender to his own belt, a belt that once again won’t be defended at all for well over a year. In two weeks Strikeforce released two very different stories about this thing, who knows what different information they will release next week? All in all I think I would be more excited if Strikeforce would of finally just booked the fights people want to see and stopped trying to confuse us with an overly odd and complex tournament that they can’t even figure out themselves.

    Of course fans are going to be talking about all these issues on the internet, its what fans do. Once again Strikeforce went and announced something before they had their facts straight. This isn’t the fans’ fault its Strikeforce’s for completely changing their story a week after they announced everything and making this more awkward and complex than it needs to be. They are a company desperately in need of a new PR department.

    • mr. roadblock says:

      This is exactly how I feel, too.

      I want to see a good tournament that gives us a lot of great fights to enjoy and analyze.

      It’s good that people are getting fired up, about what many of us perceive as mistakes, now. Maybe Coker will change his mind and do the right thing. We’ve seen Dana White change his mind before when fans said something sucked.

  13. Isaiah says:

    Yeah, Fedor vs. Bigfoot and Overeem vs. Werdum are totally going to suck because fans on the Internet were confused about whether one of those fights was scheduled for five rounds or three rounds. Man, I was looking forward to them, but now, forget it. I won’t be able to enjoy the fights knowing that Internet fans were confused for about a week, a few weeks before the fights. Oh, and having a backup plan in place in the unlikely event of a draw also is sucking my ability to enjoy good fights. O, woe is me!

    • jdavis says:

      Fedor vs Bigfoot should be a squash, Overeem vs Werdum will be great (wish they would get it scheduled already), the second round between Fedor vs Overeem/Werdum will also be worth looking forward too. What if Fedor breaks his hand again? Am I supposed to be excited that a five man commission is going to debate which reserve guy then goes on to fight Overeem/Werdum? The entire tournament structure very well could get in the way of just enjoying good fights before it’s all said and done.

      If all this was just so fans could enjoy good fights then perhaps they should of just booked good fights instead of heaping all this other stuff on top of it. No one is bitching about getting some good fights, it’s all this other stuff that has people concerned.

      • Isaiah says:

        What if Fedor gets killed in a car accident? WTF does that have to do with being excited about fights that are booked?

        And, no, you’re not supposed to be excited about the various backup plans. You sound like you’re offended that there are contingencies in place. What’s up with that?

        Your last paragraph is exactly my point. Why should people be concerned about all this BS that may or may not happen? What does that have to do with MMA? I’m not trying to be a jerk, but just step back for a second and try to read your posts through the eyes of an MMA fan who is not getting involved in propaganda battles on the Internet. It’s really absurd.

        • mr. roadblock says:

          jdavis is right. The Werdum/Overeem fight isn’t booked yet. Neither is Barnett/Rogers.

          Coker says he wants this thing to be wrapped up in 8 months. That would be October (8 months from first event).

          That’s going to be real tight.

          Fedor’s hand has a real tendency to get injured when he doesn’t like an upcoming opponent. So that will be interesting to watch.

        • Isaiah says:

          “Fedor’s hand has a real tendency to get injured when he doesn’t like an upcoming opponent. So that will be interesting to watch.”

          Haha. Clearly, I’m dealing with someone with an agenda. Have a nice day.

  14. robthom says:

    I actually think its a better idea to not have the title on the line in the tournament and 3 minute rounds.

    1. I dont like the idea of messing around with the standard ruleset we’ve got for less then neccisary reasons.
    Like elite XC and their new weight classes to suit any new situation.

    I also agree with Harkness that the 5 man commision and 4rth “pride” judge are stupid and melodramatic for the same reason.

    2. If overeem doesn’t win the whole thing (he wont 😉 ), then we’ll just get another headliner fight afterwards.
    IE: There’s really no reason to use up a title fight too. If the tournament comes off without a hitch then thats plenty.

    Really looking forward to this though!

    I’ve never seen a MMA tournament this stacked before that wasn’t hobbled by corruption.
    All these goofy side ideas are still much more prefferable than flat out corruption.

    • Mark says:

      You must not have seen either Ultimate Ultimate or PRIDE’s 2000 tournament and 2006 Open Weight Grand Prix.

      • robthom says:

        I didn’t see the 2000 at the time but everything that I’ve read about it ever since has never made me want to catch up on it.

        I’ve seen fights from it.

        The 2006 was pretty good.

        They all had moments,
        but this one is better.

        There were some great fights in the pride tournaments, but nothing that couldn’t have been achieved with realistic matchmaking.

        It was a shame that those great matchups would never be arranged on every pride card until they were forced by the framework of manipulated political pride tournament.

        • robthom says:

          Actually I just noticed that you said the OW tournament.

          I just assumed that you were reffering to the LHW with Shogun and Arona.
          (That was the best/least messed up one they had.)

          That OW tournament was a trainwreck!

          That was the worst example of a corrupt pride tournament out of them all!

          Lol.

    • 45 Huddle says:

      Or PRIDE Grand Prix 2000 with Rua, Silva, Rampage, Arona, Noguiera, Overeem, and others.

      This tournament is something that came out of 2005. And it’s 2011.

  15. robthom says:

    Shame about Helwani and Fowkles over at AOL!

    Victems of MMA populariy, and valuable talents who any smarty would steal on as fast as possible!

  16. Coyote says:

    Its amazing how #Strikeforce for good of bad, is having all the attention for once.

  17. Jason Harris says:

    People are misreading most of the criticism for Strikeforce, here. All of us want to see these fights happen. The problem is, Strikeforce is showing through their actions that they have a high likelihood of screwing this up somehow. Ideally, we see this tourney go the way it’s supposed to, but it seems like they keep going out of their way to find ways for it to go horribly wrong.

    The only thing worse than not booking guys to fight is promising something awesome and not delivering. Unfortunately, Coker & Co. haven’t built enough trust with the fanbase for anyone to believe they are capable of delivering without screw ups.

    • We’re reading it just fine. I’m just perplexed as to why it is that you care so much. The fights that are booked are very likely to happen. It seems that the narrative (since everyone loves that word!) being pushed is that no one should care becuase they will screw up the tourney eventually. How does that make a lick of sense? Honestly? Its like being a fan of a team and refusing to watch them because “they’ll lose in the playoffs”. No one does that.

      • Jason Harris says:

        Like being a fan of a team who swears up and down they’ll sign all sorts of hot free agents and become awesome, but due to poor management those guys never end up actually playing.

  18. Zheroen says:

    Paradoxx – you really think Roy Nelson (34 years old) or a someone like Court McGee (not even ranked in the top 25 of his division) will be going strong/a champion in the next 2 years, while Overeem (31), Werdum (33), Barnett (33), and even Fedor (34) are all put out to pasture? Nice logic there, guy.

  19. clintk9 says:

    If SF shut down tommorrow:

    UFC Still wouldnt be able to co-promte with M1, then Fedor ends up in Russia or Japan

    UFC wont sign: Barnett,Werdum,Arlovski,Sergie,Rogers (Maybe Bigfoot) because they are happy with thier top 5 guys and the Nelsons, & Shaubs that follow (and another 25 HW’s on the roster who suck & shoulndt be there)

    so, thank god for SF!

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