Why Hendo-Fedor is bad for Strikeforce, and perhaps, MMA as a whole

Posted: April 15, 2011 in Marketing, PR, Strikeforce, UFC

This fight may have made sense in Pride, not Strikeforce

Not too long ago we welcomed Dan Henderson back to the world of championship gold.  Unfortunately, a few of my points look like they may come to fruition this summer.

Despite the resources and backing of Zuffa, the Strikeforce marketing equation appears to be back in use:  1 star + 1 former star = main event magic. That’s right, I’m referring to Dan Henderson vs Fedor  Emelianenko. Unlike a lot of the blogs and MMA outlets who are praising this match up, I am on the other side of the fence altogether.

Let’s be clear on this.  There is NO good outcome for this fight.

Why a champion is being pitted against someone coming off of two back-to-back losses is mind boggling.  The last emperor is no more. There is no myth or mystique, only man.  Would any other fighter be handed a shot at a champion after two losses? No.  Setting up this fight only does the following:

  • Insults the fans. True fans want to watch the best enter the cage and compete. Are we really to believe this is the best light heavyweight match up we have for Hendo? I don’t think so.
  • Devalues the Strikeforce championships. At the end of Diaz v Daley fans and reporters were crying out for unification belts of the two Zuffa brands.  This fight  does not tell us that the
  • Wastes the Zuffa marketing engine. I hoped that Couture-Tomey was the last circus fight, but perhaps I was wrong.

The only positive thing that comes out of this equation for Zuffa is actually 2/3 of my negative points.  Let’s be honest, for years the UFC has wanted to prove that Fedor was overrated and that Strikeforce was a lower-tier organization.  This would prove both of those points.  However, the UFC is also a very business-savvy organization that treats its fans well.  As such, this whole set up confuses me. I’m still hoping it’s just rumor and speculation to get some “buzz” around the newly managed Strikeforce.

This is of course, only my opinion and I’m open to hearing from folks who want this fight to explain to me why this fight makes sense.

I’ll be hitting the road for some travel, so this will be it for me for the week. See you folks next week…

  1. […] Hendo v Fedor is the not-so-long awaited fight fans may or may not be clamoring for.  If you read this blog you know I’m not one for “superfights.”  I just want to see quality fights between athletes at the same stage in their career and at the same level of competitiveness.  I was hoping this trailer would sway me to give this fight another chance.  Instead, it reminded me exactly why I did not want to watch this fight.  If you watch, the message is not so subtle: This fight would have been great 10 years ago…. […]

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