Strikeforce tourney finalist Daniel Cormier confirms broken hand
Strikeforce grand-prix finalist Daniel Cormier, in fact, did break his right hand.
At this past weekend's "Strikeforce: Barnett vs. Kharitonov" event, Cormier and Strikeforce officials determined he likely broke his hand in a Sept. 10 semifinal victory over Antonio "Giant" Silva.
Cormier confirmed the break on
Just got done seeing Dr. Hand is broken will be on the shelf 4 a while. Still looking forward to finishing tourney. Thx 4 support. DC"
Mo Lawal on Strikeforce: "Seems like Dr. Kevorkian is waiting to pull the plug"
At this past weekend's poorly attended Strikeforce event, Muhammed "King Mo" Lawal was one of the few to say it – even though most people were thinking it.
Strikeforce appears all but dead.
"I (had) thought Strikeforce was a cancer patient," he told MMAjunkie.com Radio (www.mmajunkie.com/radio). "Man, it's a damn AIDS patient instead – with Dr. Jack Kevorkian in the background ready to pull the plug."
Lawal's criticism began even before the event, "Strikeforce Grand Prix: Barnett vs. Kharitonov," which took place Saturday at Cincinanti's U.S. Bank Arena. Lawal (8-1 MMA, 3-1 SF) defeated fellow light heavyweight Roger Gracie (4-1 MMA, 2-1 SF) via first-round knockout on the Showtime-televised main card.
Strikeforce's Pat Healy not surprised by Maximo Blanco's illegal kicks
Pat Healy can't say he's really all that surprised.
Before the lightweight fighter took a late-notice booking against Maximo Blanco, he looked up his opponent's past bouts in Japan and noticed a disturbing trend: He often fought dirty.
Healy's bout with Blanco at Saturday's "Strikeforce World Grand Prix: Barnett vs. Kharitonov" event nearly ended early due to his opponent's illegal kicks. But Healy was determined to earn his victory the old-fashioned way.
Instead, Healy shook off the affects of nearly a dozen illegal kicks and stormed back for a second-round submission victory on the Showtime-televised main card at Cincinnati's U.S. Bank Arena.
New Strikeforce champ Luke Rockhold never doubted AKA's ability to sweep
Prior to claiming the Strikeforce middleweight title, Luke Rockhold made a bold prediction.
A few days after Brazilian fighters swept their American counterparts at UFC 134 in Rio de Janeiro, Rockhold told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) he expected revenge.
In fact, he promised he and his American Kickboxing Academy teammates would sweep their Brazilian opponents at Saturday's "Strikeforce World Grand Prix: Barnett vs. Kharitonov" event. Following an AKA clean sweep, no one's doubting him now.
"I had confidence in my camp," Rockhold told MMAjunkie.com after Saturday's event at Cincinnati's U.S. Bank Arena. "Everyone was just rising to the occasion. We were just pushing each other really hard through this camp.
"Yeah, AKA. Don't step on our turf."
Rockhold (8-1 MMA, 7-0 SF), of course, did his part by upsetting champion Ronaldo "Jacare" Souza (14-3 MMA, 4-1 SF) via unanimous decision. The fighter, who's spent the majority of his career developing under the Strikeforce banner, fought in a featured bout on the night's Showtime-televised main card. While the media's cageside scoring ranged from 48-47 for Rockhold to MMAjunkie.com's 49-46 score for Souza, the judges saw it more clearly and awarded the new champ the victory, 50-45, 48-47 and 48-47.
Strikeforce grand-prix's conclusion determined by Daniel Cormier's hand recovery
What has five fingers and will determine the future of the Strikeforce heavyweight grand prix?
It's the hand that led Daniel Cormier to a semifinal-round victory – and the same one that could keep him out the finale.
Cormier, who entered Saturday's semifinals as an injury replacement for tourney favorite Alistair Overeem, picked up an impressive victory at Cincinnati's U.S. Bank Arena. But it came at a cost.
In the night's Showtime-televised co-headliner, Cormier (9-0 MMA, 6-0 SF) blasted former EliteXC champ Antonio Silva (16-3 MMA, 3-2 SF) with a thunderous right hand early in the fight. Silva crashed to the mat and quickly regained his composure, but he was never the same fighter. And that proved to be a blessing for Cormier, who'd score additional knockdowns before a knockout stoppage late in the first round.
"I kind of hurt my hand on the very first right hand when he went down," said Cormier, who entered the night's post-fight press conference with his hand bandaged. "When he got up, I was like, 'How am I going to get through 15 minutes with my hand hurting like it was?' But I kept going. I kept throwing it."
After semifinal win, Strikeforce's Josh Barnett campaigns for shot at regular title
Alistair Overeem is gone from Strikeforce and part of the UFC, and his heavyweight title now sits vacant.
In the meantime, Josh Barnett and Daniel Cormier will fight in early 2012 for a heavyweight-grand-prix championship belt.
But following his main-event victory over Sergei Kharitonov (18-5 MMA, 1-1 SF) at Saturday's "Strikeforce World Grand Prix: Barnett vs. Kharitonov" event, Barnett (31-5 MMA, 2-0 SF) publicly stated his case for the tourney winner getting the regular title.
Renato "Babalu" Sobral Talks Strikeforce, Retirement
Renato "Babalu" Sobral has been an MMA fighter for 14 years now, and thinks his time in the cage/ring might be coming to an end soon. He still wants to fight again though, and is just waiting for Strikeforce to book him. He spoke to Tatame about his next bout, and how retirement is creeping up:
"I’m just waiting this event of the 10th goes by so that I know when I’ll fight again", tells, explaining how he’s spending his days with no scheduled bouts. "Meanwhile, I’m helping Rafael (Cordeiro) on the trainings, I have my gym, Gracie Barra Cerritos, where I train my student, I have my family… I have a big group of kids I like to teach".
With Koscheck seal of approval, Strikeforce's "King Mo" goes after Roger Gracie
Sometimes support comes from the unlikeliest of places.
A world traveler in search of deeper MMA knowledge, Muhammed "King Mo" Lawal has taken residence with American Kickboxing Academy in San Jose, Calif. It's not Thunderdome in there, but you certainly have to prove yourself. On sparring day, there are few friends.
That's why Lawal was shocked, quite frankly, to hear Josh Koscheck give praise to his efforts as he prepares to meet Roger Gracie at "Strikeforce Grand Prix: Barnett vs. Kharitonov."
Gegard Mousasi targeted for Strikeforce event on Dec. 17
Former Strikeforce light heavyweight champion Gegard Mousasi is again returning to the states in hopes of leaving under better circumstances this time around.
The Dutch-Armenian fighter has been targeted to fight on an as-yet-unannounced Strikeforce card set for Dec. 17, a source close to the fighter confirmed to MMAjunkie.com. An opponent has yet to be named for the event, which is currently without a city and venue.
The booking opportunity is Mousasi's first since he drew Keith Jardine at "Strikeforce: Diaz vs. Daley."
Pat Healy Flirts With Accusing Maximo Blanco of Steroid Use
Pat Healy stepped in for Josh Thomson earlier this week, and he's already talking about new opponent Maximo Blanco. Healy spoke with Matt Bishop on Bloody Elbow Radio about Blanco's first fight in the States, and all but accused the latter of drug use:
Matt Bishop: Do you think this being his first fight in the cage can be a big factor for you?
Pat Healy: Yeah, I think that's a huge factor. If you've never fought in a cage before, it's a lot different than a ring. It's also his first time fighting in the States where they have athletic commissions who drug test for steroids, I think that'll be a big thing for him, too. Yeah. All that's going to affect him, I believe.
Matt Bishop: OK, I have to dig deeper on this one. So you mention his first time fighting with a commission, where they test for steroids. I can't say you're beating around the bush there, it seems like you're pretty much coming out and saying it.
Pat Healy: Well, you know, I've heard a lot of rumors. I think a lot of those PRIDE guys when they came over, they had their first performances, and you can look at all the top PRIDE guys, a lot of them came to the UFC and lost the first time and looked like they were gassed and tired and you know, I think it had a lot to do with the athletic commissions doing drug tests out here. You look at the size difference with a lot of those PRIDE guys when they were back in their hype, they looked a little bit unnatural, if you will.
Healy replaces Thomson, meets Blanco at "Strikeforce Grand Prix: Barnett vs. Kharitonov"
Pat Healy has replaced injured Josh Thomson and now meets fellow lightweight Maximo Blanco at next week's "Strikeforce Grand Prix: Barnett vs. Kharitonov" event.
MMAjunkie.com passed along news of Thomson's injured foot this past week, and Strikeforce officials announced his replacement overnight.
"Strikeforce Grand Prix: Barnett vs. Kharitonov" takes place Sept. 10 at Cincinnati's U.S. Bank Arena, and Healy vs. Blanco is slated to compete on the Showtime-televised main card.
Josh Thomson scratched from "Strikeforce Grand Prix: Barnett vs. Kharitonov"
The injury bug has bitten Josh Thomson (18-4 MMA, 9-2 SF) once again.
The former Strikeforce champ has been forced to withdraw from a fight with Maximo Blanco (8-2-1 MMA, 0-0 SF) at "Strikeforce Grand Prix: Barnett vs. Kharitonov" due to an injured foot.
The event takes place Sept. 10 at Cincinnati's U.S. Bank Arena, and Thomson was slated to compete on the Showtime-televised main card.
Gilbert Melendez vs. Jorge Masvidal targeted for December
An expected lightweight title bout between Strikeforce champ Gilbert Melendez (19-2 MMA, 9-1 SF) and Jorge Masvidal (22-6 MMA, 4-0 SF) has been targeted for Dec. 17.
Sources close to the event today told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) of the date, though a city and venue has yet to be confirmed.
Melendez makes the third defense of his Strikeforce title while Masvidal get his shot after impressive back-to-back victories.
In his most recent appearance, Melendez earned a second victory over Japanese standout Tatsuya Kawajiri and with a first-round TKO stoppage at "Strikeforce: Diaz vs. Daley."
The Cesar Gracie product has since pined for the opportunity to fight the UFC champion, and UFC president Dana White has said he'd love to have Melendez fight inside the octagon. But that opportunity isn't possible as of yet because the champ is still under contract with Strikeforce. And both White and Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker have dismissed a possible crossover fight even as Melendez teammate Nick Diaz was able to relinquish his Strikeforce welterweight title for a shot at UFC welterweight champ Georges St-Pierre.
"Right now, there are no other fighters that are going to go over there," Coker said. "We expect him to continue fighting in Strikeforce and getting ready for a fight in the fall...
Alistair Overeem Says He Is Not Cut From Strikeforce, Wants an Immediate UFC Title Shot
The latest chapter in the Zuffa vs. Golden Glory discussion sounds like good news for fans of The Reem. According to both Overeem himself and Golden Glory head Bas Boon, Alistair Overeem has not in fact been cut from Strikeforce or stripped of the Heavyweight title.
Overeem sat down with MMA Bay to discuss this whole situation, saying that he is in a negotiation period with the UFC. He also added that he's ready to come to the UFC, and he wants an immediate shot at the Heavyweight title:
I am in an exclusive negotiation period [with the UFC]. If we can find common ground, we can work together, and if we can't, then we're going to depart. I want to fight in the UFC. They have the best guys, but it has to be at the right terms. So, we're just going to have to wait and see.
Strikeforce exec denies Marloes Coenen's claims of fight week mistreatment
As a former Strikeforce champion, Marloes Coenen is understandably upset at the promotion for cutting her following a title-bout loss to Miesha Tate at this past month's "Strikeforce and M-1 Global: Fedor vs. Henderson" event.
But as a Strikeforce executive, former WEC boss Reed Harris doesn't understand why she's not being exactly truthful about the circumstances surrounding her release.
"When I read [what Coenen told MMAjunkie.com], I thought, 'Wow, there's some motive behind this because to take that situation and turn it around is just not right,'" Harris told MMAjunkie.com Radio (www.mmajunkie.com/radio).
Earlier this week, Coenen told MMAjunkie.com that she sensed a brewing issue even before her fight. The Golden Glory product was conspicuously absent from the July 30 event's pre-fight press conference, and she seemed to suggest that was no accident.
"We wanted to go with somebody else, and they said, 'No, no, you don't have to come any more. It's already done and you can stay [at the hotel],'" Coenen said. "Really weird to me because you don't leave the champion out of the press conference. If you say you will leave at 10 o'clock, you won't leave at 9:55. That happened throughout the entire week, that kind of stuff."
Harris, who was actually driving the vehicle Coenen was expected to take from her Hoffman Estates hotel to the downtown Chicago press conference, said her recounting of the situation wasn't exactly accurate...