Mythbusters: STRIKEFORCE Edition

Posted: June 28, 2010 in Strikeforce

Picture from Yahoo! Sports

Given that Frank Shamrock retired this weekend, I waited a few days before I wrote about this weekend’s STRIKEFORCE main event.  As many of you know by now, finally, “The Last Emperor” has fallen.  For those that did not catch the STRIKEFORCE event on Saturday, Fedor Emelianenko was defeated by extreme longshot Fabricio Werdum.  In the opening minutes of the fight, Werdum slapped on a nasty armbar/triangle hybrid submission that forced the mythological Fedor to tap out – ending his 10 year winning streak.   As many fans know, this defeat of a fighter most deemed unbeatable certainly raised some eyebrows and some emotions.  How did UFC President Dana White respond? Well, check out his response on Twitter:

What does this loss mean for MMA and for STRIKEFORCE?

For MMA this means little to nothing.  The sport is built on the fact that any fighter can win on any given day.  More importantly, the days of the “weak” heavyweight ranks is long gone and there are many fighters waiting in the wing to become “the next Fedor.”

For STRIKEFORCE this is another damaging blow to the brand.  This is the second time the company has latched onto a phenom (that isn’t Belfort) and watched that individual lose to a long shot opponent.   The last time they did this was with Kimbo Slice.  Kimbo was viewed as the unstoppable street warrior and was thrown fish after fish for easy wins and rising viewership.  Then it happened, Kimbo fell to virtual unknown (outside of TUF fans) Seth Petruzzi.

This time the Company tried to put all its eggs in the Fedor basket.  The same equation was used, name brand fighter + fish = main event.  Werdum, although a great fighter, was not considered by many to be of the same caliber of Fedor.  Well, we were all wrong on that one.

For STRIKEFORCE to succeed it needs to go back to the drawing board.  Right now their strategy reminds me of the Monday night wars in pro wrestling.  This was when WCW would buy up aging WWE talent to cash in quickly on existing fans rather than branding and growing its own young talent.  We’re seeing that problem here.  STRIKEFORCE needs to stop trying to grab former big names and start creating new ones.  MMA schools are all over the world and are growing fresh, young, exciting talents.  Find them and promote them – they are the future…teach them well and let them lead the way.

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Comments
  1. […] Henderson, the aggressive courtship of Shields by the UFC, the retirement of Frank Shamrock and the fall of Fedor to Werdum have certainly given STRIKEFORCE its fair share of headaches.  These could all be […]

  2. […] TUF, which is farm new talent, they keep trying to grow their brand on existing fighters.  The mystique of Emelianenko is over.  Find the next “Emperor” – he or she will more likely to help you draw […]

  3. […] you read this blog you know I was not one to believe in the hype of “The Last Emperor” – but, unless you’re Kenny Florian, I won’t […]

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