Strikeforce: Best for M-1, maybe not the best for Fedor

First off, i'd like to say that I am absolutely stoked that Fedor is fighting in America (and on a channel that I have, at that). With the new revelation that SF agreed to co-promote with M-1, and that Fedor will be prominently be featured on Showtime, NBC, and CBS, I think it's worth hashing out exactly what the repercussions of such an event have on the global landscape of MMA; for Strikeforce, for Fedor, and for the UFC.




First, let's talk about what this means for SF:  Strikeforce, one of the only North American promotions that has been able to operate in the green, as well as put on high caliber fights, often with fringe top 10 fighters, while avoiding the wrath of the UFC's vicious counter- programming, and strongarm business tactics.  

Strikeforce can now boast a very robust HW division, ripe with fighters like Fedor, Overeem, Werdum, Rogers (3 all but guaranteed challengers to the HW crown), as well as guys like Buentello, Roger Gracie, etc.   One would assume that Fedor will get the first crack at Allistair's crown, given that his hand is better by the fall.  Otherwise, they might give him a squash match against Buentello, or a #1 contender match against Fabricio.


For Fedor, there are 2 sides of the coin- on 1 side, Fedor does haved access to some very legitimate competition, the ability to copromote with a major North American promotion (which does benefit him, as he holds a purported 20% share in the stock/ ownership of M-1), and an opportunity to be featured on Network television (CBS for sure, and i'm not entirely sure about NBC).  

On the other side, Fedor has recieved the ire of many fans, and has been accused of dodging top competition, even when a very lucrative deal was (allegedly) offered to him.  If the terms of the reported deal (6 mil a fight, M-1 given a free sponsorship deal, auto- title shot against Lesnar, Fedor allowed to compete in combat sambo, etc) were true, then Fedor could've missed out on 2 very important things: 1) The exposure that the UFC can provide, backed by their unparalleled marketing muscle, and access to arguably the best HW division in MMA currently; and 2) $$$$$$.  M-1 would've gotten a good deal of attention and exposure with the free sponsorship offered to it by the UFC, and that's not even to mention the 7 figures a fight Fedor would be making.



Then finally- where this leaves the UFC in all this.  It's been said many times before- Fedor doesn't need the UFC, and the UFC doesn't need Fedor, but it sure would be cool (especially NOW) if the UFC and Fedor could come to terms.  And honestly, if what M-1 said is true- that M-1/ Fedor and the UFC had a very productive meeting, I don't think it's out of the realm of possibility that Emelianenko could leave SF when they run out of credible challengers for him, and that Fedor and UFC start talking again.  Maybe by then, with the business partnership Strikeforce and M-1 had could've turned out to have either run it's course, or found not to be very beneficial in the first place.

At any rate, it kind of hurts the UFC's credibility that they don't have Fedor in their HW ranks; it also kind of hurts Fedor's credibility that he's not fighting the absolute BEST OF THE BEST.  Sure, Strikeforce has an adequate HW division, but they're a decided 2'nd to the UFC's HW division.  Having Fedor certainly gives SF a feather in it's cap, but the UFC's 205+ ranks have 1 thing which Strikeforce simply does not:  depth and breadth.


All in all, i'm extremely interested to see how it all plays out, and only time will tell what happens in the Global HW scene.

\The FanPosts are solely the subjective opinions of Bloody Elbow readers and do not necessarily reflect the views of Bloody Elbow editors or staff.

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