Strikeforce Releases Shields; Shields Wants Shot at Anderson Silva
Strikeforce released its middleweight champion, Jake Shields, from his contract with the organization on Wednesday, according to an industry source with direct knowledge of the negotiations.
The 31-year-old Shields had been in a final-phase “matching period” of his recently completed contract with the San Jose, Calif.-based promotion, which allowed him to receive bids from other organizations, including the UFC, that Strikeforce could review and match in order to keep his services. However, the source said Strikeforce waived that contractual right in its final 2-3 weeks and opted to release the Cesar Gracie fighter altogether before the period expired.
Also, Ive really come to enjoy this site.
Cung Le Wants to Fight...but Not in a Tournament
Coming off of a devastating victory over Scott Smith last weekend, Cung Le has some thoughts on his future with Strikeforce and MMA, but it's likely not a run in the rumored middleweight tournament to crown a new champion should Jake Shields leave the organization.
The 38-year-old San Jose, Calif., based fighter took several months away from a lucrative film career and other projects in Hollywood to focus on his fight camp to prepare for Smith. The work paid off. Le finished Smith with strikes in the second round of their rematch.
Still dedicated to fighting, Le also has offers coming in for more movie roles, as well as the chance to work as a choreographer for fight scenes in the film industry, and he knows that there is a time limit on how much he has left for MMA.
SF Fedor vs. Werdum: Estimated 500,000 Viewers
While Showtime executives do not traditionally release ratings figures, early estimates for this past weekend's historic "Strikeforce and M-1 Global: Fedor vs. Werdum" co-promoted event put the average Showtime viewership at nearly 500,000 viewers. Showtime experienced a ratings jump of 56 percent for the show against May's "Strikeforce: St. Louis" event, which drew 308,000 average viewers. The sources also indicated that Showtime executives are pleased with the results and that "Fedor vs. Werdum" now ranks as the third-most viewed Strikeforce card in Showtime's history behind the August 2009 "Carano vs. Cyborg" event and January's "Strikeforce: Miami." Quarter-hour and peak figures were not revealed. For those curious, ratings for Spike's SF counter-programming, a replay of UFC 113, should be out later today.
"Fedor vs. Werdum" ratings up 56 percent, rates third-highest ever for Showtime
While Showtime executives do not traditionally release ratings figures, early estimates for this past weekend's historic "Strikeforce and M-1 Global: Fedor vs. Werdum" co-promoted event put the average Showtime viewership at nearly 500,000 viewers.
MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) has learned from industry sources that Showtime experienced a ratings jump of 56 percent for the show against May's "Strikeforce: St. Louis" event, which drew 308,000 average viewers.
The sources also indicated that Showtime executives are pleased with the results and that "Fedor vs. Werdum" now ranks as the third-most viewed Strikeforce card in Showtime's history behind the August 2009 "Carano vs. Cyborg" event and January's "Strikeforce: Miami."
Quarter-hour and peak figures were not revealed.
SF Fedor vs. Werdum Medical Suspensions
The CSAC has announced the medical suspensions from Saturday's SF Fedor vs. Werdum event. Only 5 of the 16 fighters were suspended, all getting at least 45 days with both Jan Finney & Josh Thomson both suspended 180 days unless cleared early.
SF Fedor vs. Werdum Fighter Payouts
The CSAC has revealed the official fighter payouts from SF Fedor vs. Werdum. The total disclosed payouts were $788,800 with the biggest share-$400,000-going to Fedor. In fact, 6 of the 8 main card fighters combined to earn a total of $750,000 with nobody else getting more than $8000.
Werdum: Fighting Overeem is 'a step backwards' wants rematch
"The expectations were high. I was well trained. Even though they changed the date of my fight, I didn't stop training... They scheduled it for April, then for May, and I didn't stop training, so, in fact, it end up being a good thing for me. I was physically great, 100% mentally, happy, gathered with my team, my family, my mom, my brother and my sister, the crew that came from Brazil, so the vibe was 100% positive. The guys from the event were upset because we made a lot of noise. The Athletic Commission wanted to give us a fine because we were making a huge mess, but we showed our happiness for everybody, it was a great vibe. And it was the fight I felt best about myself, I was at ease in the ring, in the dressing room, backstage, it was great."
"What we wanted was the submission, the rest was all part of the strategy to go for the ground as soon as possible, even if he came forward, I wanted to go for the ground," Werdum stated. "I couldn't make up my mind if I would go for his arm or his neck. I went one way, he defended himself, and then I went the other way, so that double attack was great, because while he defended his neck, I got his arm and tightened the triangle... You can watch the video of the bout and you'll see that I checked the feet, the shin, the arm, I checked it and I was going to stretch his arm right there. I grabbed his arm and he was about to tap out, but I didn't work out, so I tightened the triangle and it worked."
"I fell on the ground wanting to go there. It wasn't a knockdown, not at all. I felt the blow, but it wasn't that strong, I just lost my balance."
With Fedor "Out Of The Picture", Alistair Overeem Has A Score To Settle With Fabricio Werdum
So says the reigining SF Heavyweight Champion. "A loss is always a possibility, but naturally, I thought Fedor would beat him. It’s about what the people want to see, what the organization wants and what I want. That all pointed to Fedor, but he declined to fight me last month in the May 15 show and he’d rather fight Werdum. Now he lost to him. It’s changed everything. Fedor’s a little bit out of the picture. He has one more fight on his (Strikeforce) contract and I don’t know against who he’ll fight. He might retire after that anyway. He might retire now. He’s the X-factor. (Werdum) looked sharp, so all I can say is congratulations to him. I have a score to settle. I want to fight him."
Strikeforce's Werdum doesn't remember being hit, says stoppage fortunate
SAN JOSE, Calif. – Like famed boxer Mike Tyson before him, MMA great Fedor Emelianenko (31-2 MMA, 1-1 SF) has always had a presence about him.
Many an opponent of the Russian heavyweight has admitted after the facat that the icy cold stare of Emelianenko left them at a mental disadvantage from the opening bell.
Not so for Brazilian Fabricio Werdum (14-4-1 MMA, 3-0 SF), who defeated Emelianenko in the main event of Saturday's "Strikeforce and M-1 Global: Fedor vs. Werdum" event in San Jose, Calif. – at least not as far as he can remember.
"I never fear a fight," Werdum told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) at the evening's post-event press conference. "I like to fight. It's my life.
"I looked at Fedor, and I was confident because my training is hard training. I know this is Fedor, but I believe in myself."
Strikeforce open to Werdum-Emelianenko II; exec says pay-per-view still an option
SAN JOSE, Calif. – There were some MMA observers who believed prior to Saturday night's "Strikeforce and M-1 Global: Fedor vs. Werdum" event that a Fedor Emelianenko loss would signal the beginning of the end for both Strikeforce and M-1 Global.
But after Fabrcio Werdum shocked the world – not to mention Emelianenko – with a 69-second submission victory, Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker said nothing could be further from the truth.
In fact, while a bout between Emelianenko and Strikeforce heavyweight champion Alistair Overeem had been targeted for a future pay-per-view event, Coker thinks a rematch between "The Last Emperor" and Werdum may now prove to be the more lucrative matchup.
Fedor's loss not end of the world
The UFC loyalists are having their moment. Fedor Emelianenko, the mythic Russian heavyweight who was unbeaten over the last eight years and held the position of top heavyweight in the sport was defeated. All those who have long doubted Emelianenko’s dominance are screaming, “I told you so.” And the reaction is both warranted and unnecessary.
Lawal's First TItle Defense Set For 8/21
During last night's Strikeforce event, the promotion announced that SF Light Heavyweight Champion Muhammad Lawal will make his first title defense on August 21 in Houston. No venue or opponent was announced. The first challenger was expected to be Renato Sobral by virtue of his recent win over Robbie Lawler but Sobral said he'd rather fight Dan Henderson instead.
Frank Shamrock Retires
Frank Shamrock promised a "major announcement" during last night's Strikeforce event and he did make it...he's retiring from MMA. Unless he pulls a Randy Couture and makes a comeback he finishes his career with a 23-10-2 career record and 4 titles to his name including the first-ever UFC Middleweight Champion (now the Light Heavyweight Title). He lost his last 2 fights, both in SF to Cung Le & Nick Diaz.
Strikeforce LA: 164,000 Viewers
This past week's "Strikeforce: Los Angeles" event on Showtime peaked with nearly 200,000 viewers for a 195-pound catchweight headliner between winner Renato "Babalu" Sobral and opponent Robbie Lawler. Overall, the event averaged 164,000 viewers. Peak audiences coincided with Tim Kennedy's submission win over Trevor Prangley (196,000 viewers) and the Sobral vs. Lawler fight (197,000 viewers). However, with few big names on the card and Strikeforce's rare mid-week airing, ratings were on the low side for the organization. Other recent Strikeforce events have all scored bigger audiences, including Strikeforce Challengers 8 on May 21 (294,000), "Strikeforce St. Louis: Heavy Artillery" on May 15 (308,000) and Strikeforce Challengers 7 (316,000) on March 26.
Diaz Admits SF Brawl Role, Will Be Suspended
The TAC has a check and more coming from Nick Diaz. Diaz has on paper admitted his role in a brawl following April's "Strikeforce: Nashville" event, according to his representative. Diaz on Monday sent the Tennessee Athletic Commission a "consent order" that will trigger a three-month suspension from professional competition. However, the fighter will not be licensed in time for a Strikeforce event planned for Aug. 21 in which he was considered for a possible eight-man middleweight tournament. Cesar Gracie, Diaz's manager and trainer, said Tuesday that the fighter included his fine with the consent order as part of a reduced punishment for his role in the brawl, though he did not disclose the amount his client paid. The fine could be $5000 because he agreed to the consent order.
Fedor Became A Thorn In UFC's Side
So he says. "UFC is a money making machine. The most important thing for this organization is a brand and it's marketing. They have a couple of good fighters and there are also some very good champions; but they are trying to keep everyone at the same level. The most important thing for them is the promotion, not the fighters. I think that they lack a respect for their fighters. As for me, I became a thorn in their side... We are constantly negotiating, but only during recent time the Americans began to show some respect. The dialogue between us is completely different right now. They are more interested in our opinion."
Strikeforce Shooting for Fall Return to CBS
If you thought the post-fight brawl at Strikeforce: Nashville would immediately mark the end of the organization's run on CBS, think again.
Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker told MMA Fighting's weekly podcast, The MMA Hour, last week that, while nothing is set in stone just yet, the organization is shooting for a return to the network.
"We're going to re-engage in another conversation right after the Fedor fight and try to put something together in the fall," Coker said. "You know, there's no guarantees, and that was very clear from the beginning. So let's give it some time, get a better picture of what happened in the last two fights, and let's put a card together that makes sense for us, and if it makes sense for CBS, then they'll get back in the business."
Shields Camp Says Demands Are Fair, But SF Leaning Towards MW Tourney
If Jake Shields is doing a "numbers dance" with Strikeforce, he's dancing with himself. That's according to Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker, who has not yet extended a new contract offer to the middleweight champion. Shields' manager and father, Jack Shields, begs to differ. He said the promotion recently made an offer, and he asked for more. Despite indications that the company has already turned its attention toward an eight-man middleweight tournament in order to crown a new champion in Shields' expected absence, he stressed Jake Shields has not decided the next phase of his career. As for the tournament, fighters being considered are Ronaldo Souza, Robbie Lawler, Tim Kennedy, Dan Henderson, Nick Diaz and Jason Miller. Additionally, the winner of a June 26 bout between Scott Smith and Cung Le is under consideration for a tourney spot, as is the winner of an upcoming World Victory Road/Sengoku bout between Kazuo Misaki and champ Jorge Santiago.
Fedor Considering Retirement?
Apparently some of Fedors comments at the recent Strikeforce conference were not translated for the public to hear.
".....Aside from blatantly stating that he wasn't a fan of the UFC, when asked if he was planning on retiring, Fedor admitted that recently, he has seriously been considering retirement......"