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MMA Link Club: You buying or selling Vitor Belfort/Cung Le as UFC SJ top fight?

By Zach Arnold | September 10, 2011

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Video produced by our friends at The Fight Nerd.

Member sites of the MMA Link Club

This week’s MMA Link Club featured stories

Five Ounces of Pain: The Diaz Dilemma — MMA isn’t a beauty pageant

UFC knew what they were getting themselves into when they moved Diaz over from Strikeforce to UFC. He held up Strikeforce more than once, whether he was unwilling to take a drug test on time or his actions in the last ever Strikeforce show on CBS or his lack of cooperation in trying to put fights together that the fans wanted. Even though we didn’t always know where Diaz was, we knew who he was. He was going to smoke weed, he was going to trash-talk opponents during fights, and he was going to be himself. That’s why so many fans flock to him.

MMA Fighting: Remaining heavyweights ponder uncertain stakes in Strikeforce GP

Alistair Overeem got dropped from the tournament and signed to the UFC, so the four fighters who are left behind have to figure out for themselves exactly what’s at stake when the Grand Prix lurches onward this Saturday night.

As Josh Barnett pointed out, the winner now gets “a nice, shiny belt,” so there’s that. But aside from the hardware, what else is at stake? The answer to that depends on who you ask.

NBC Sports: Chiappetta’s primer – Strikeforce GP

On Saturday, (Luke) Rockhold returns in a championship match against middleweight kingpin Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza. It’s a big jump from where he was in February 2010 to where he’s going on Saturday. He’s being rushed. There are no two ways about that, and it will be an uphill task to seize that golden opportunity.

Cage Potato: ‘Warrior’, as reviewed by real-life MMA fighter Nick Newell

I was fully expecting campy dialogue accompanied by terrible acting, and boy was I wrong. The plot made sense and unraveled well. All in all, WARRIOR really packs a punch (get it!). Tommy Conlon (Tom Hardy) is a former high school wrestling star and Marine with a past filled with demons, which eventually come out as the movie unwinds. After the death of his mother and going incognito for a number of years, Tommy returns to the home of his alcoholic and abusive father Paddy Conlon (Nick Nolte) to remind him that he’s a piece of shit while also asking him to help him train for MMA competition.

MMA Mania: Know your Bellator – interview with Ben Saunders (part one & part two)

Everyone’s different. I’ve even toyed with the pros and cons, what aspects it takes to get your mind right. How do you accomplish that? At the end of the day for me, it’s always been when I tell myself that at no other point in time other than right there, right when that door closes and that ref says, “Fight!,” that is the only time where I actually get to go out there with no shin guard, no knee pads, no elbow pads and go really try to hurt someone.

5th Round: Jake Ellenberger expects an inspired Jake Shields following death of father

Bleacher Report: Carlos Condit speaks about Nick Diaz, GSP, and UFC 137

Middle Easy: Fedor track suit investment opportunity

Low Kick: Rich Franklin out 2-3 months with shoulder injury

MMA Convert: Jacare about to put a beatdown on Luke Rockhold

Let’s do some math. On the Souza side of the equation, there’s a Brazilian wielding some of the best jiu-jitsu on the planet, a Strikeforce middleweight belt, and experience slaying all sorts of killer competition. On the Rockhold side of the equation, there’s a jiu-jitsu brown belt, a resume full of wins over less-than-stellar competition, and an injury hiatus that encompasses the last year and a half. Now, based on my calculations, on Saturday night someone is going to be outclassed exponentially, divided brutally, and subtracted from the cage. Any idea who that’s going to be?

MMA Payout: Significance of Bellator fall preview video & prelims on

Topics: Media, MMA, StrikeForce, UFC, Zach Arnold | 9 Comments » | Permalink | Trackback |

9 Responses to “MMA Link Club: You buying or selling Vitor Belfort/Cung Le as UFC SJ top fight?”

  1. RST says:


    A smelly souvenir of the wasted career and ultimate ruination of one of the formerly greatest talents in the sport!

    Is there anything Fedors handlers wont do to bleed a few more bucks out of him?

    How much for Fedors laptop and DVD player?

  2. david m says:

    Cung could have been a contender had he not wasted his entire athletic prime doing san shou and making C movies. Vitor is going to train wreck him.

  3. Chromium says:

    Cung Le vs. Vitor seems like a really good third-from-the-top fight. Faber vs. Bowles is a good semi-main-event. There is nothing close to a PPV-worthy main event. If it wasn’t for issues with Spike right now this would be a good event to “downgrade” to free tv.

    What’s more, while I think it’s fully plausible that Cung Le threatened to retire if he didn’t get an immediate fight in the UFC, it still sends a horrible message about what’s going on with Strikeforce.

    Prior to this, everyone who had jumped from Strikeforce was at the end of their contract, and there was either a financial incentive to switch them over (Overeem and Hendo’s contracts are both too large to justify keeping them off PPV), or the fact that Mayhem was banned from Showtime and they were desperate for a TUF coach, or Nick Diaz having a boxing match in his contract that he could use as leverage.

    Cung Le, while undeniably a name, was not making what the three champions make, is not the same level of star that the three champions are. They just needed to bolster a PPV card that lost its main-event. It seems clear that they’re just taking SF stars over as needed. This does not bode well for the long-term health of Strikeforce. I counted, yes I actually counted and leaving women out of it, conservatively there are between 35 and 48 fighters that are UFC-level in Strikeforce, even after Cung Le leaving. With probably fewer actual cards next year than this year, and a Flyweight division incoming (the new season of TUF has several very well known Flyweights), can the UFC afford to absorb all that?

  4. 45 Huddle says:

    Anderson Silva is going to be fighting on the San Jose card…. Watch and see…

    Cung Le has no chance against Vitor Belfort. It’s going to look a lot like the whopping Belfort put on Akiyama.

  5. Steve4192 says:

    LOL at that MMA Convert article. They got every damn fight wrong, and did it in embarrassing fashion, saying Jacare was going to outclass Rockhold exponentially, Cormier’s only chance was via lay & pray, Gracie was going to nail Mo with a sub, and Maxi would damn near kill Healy.

    I usually like Genia’s stuff, but that article read like a Sherdog post.

    • Chromium says:

      To be fair, most people were shocked by Jacare and Cormier’s performances. I know Healy is a lot better than his record would suggest but wouldn’t have been surprised if Maximo had mauled him. As for Gracie I have no idea where the hype-train surrounding him came from.

      Anyway, why is it that when I see people making fun of picks, it’s always after the event?

  6. Kelvin Hunt says:

    Le/Belfort as a main event is a joke…I wouldn’t be happy with that as the main event of a UFN..much less a PPV.

  7. Cung Le doesn’t really train MMA so much as he does action movies anymore. He doesn’t even cut weight. It’s not the mid-90s – you either do MMA, or you don’t. There is no in-between.

    I love Le and think he’s a fantastic martial artist, but at this point it would be wise to have him in a ‘legends match’ against another semi-retired fighter, and not someone who is a top 5 MW in the UFC.


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