Some curious news out of the land of Strikeforce today. Scott Coker spoke to MMAJunkie about the welterweight title situation, and implied that someone new will be stepping into the organization soon. And the implication is that this new fighter is of a very high caliber, judging by Coker's words anyway. When he was asked if the Paul Daley vs. Tyron Woodley fight on July 30th was a # 1 contenders matchup, he had this to say:
"I would say the winner of that fight we're definitely keeping our eye on," Coker said. "I think by the end of the year, you'll see a title fight happening."
A typical non-answer from Coker. I thought this fight might be for the title itself, but apparently not. And it seems like that is the case because of what Coker said next:
"We're about to sign another fighter that until it's done I don't want to say who it is," Coker told www.mmajunkie.com. "It's possible (the new fighter could immediately fight for a title). Maybe we'll give him one fight, and we'll see what happens. But I definitely think the experience will speak for itself."
Who is this mystery fighter, you ask? Well, immediate speculation would point at Nate Marquardt. Dana White's "business as usual" speech when Zuffa bought Strikeforce stated that Strikeforce and the UFC would be competing for fighters. If that is truly the case, it could definitely be him. Dana never said Marquardt wouldn't fight for the company anymore, only the UFC. Of course, Marquardt hasn't actually ever competed at welterweight but he was about to at UFC on Versus 4 before he was fired for the TRT issues.
If it's not Marquardt, pickings are slim. The only top 25 fighter at welterweight that isn't under the Zuffa/Forza banner or signed to Bellator is Siyar Bahadurzada, who had a very public falling out with Strikeforce earlier this year after they had a major disagreement about contracts. The best top-flight prospect available is Jordan Mein, but he certainly wouldn't be in a position to fight for a title. The only other option seems to be a fighter coming over from the UFC, and that could be any number of guys.
So who is it? And will that person face the winner of Daley/Woodley for the Strikeforce welterweight title that Nick Diaz recently vacated? We should know soon enough.