Is Strikeforce Championship Situation Salvageable?

Cristiane "Cyborg" Santos is an example of how Strikeforce's championship situation has gone awry.

You might not realize it, but Strikeforce's championship situation is in a state of general disarray.

Let's take a brief look at the company's champions before we proceed any further:

So by my count, that's two championships that are vacated and two divisions that have a champion that isn't under contract. Of the three champions who currently are in place, Melendez is probably headed to the UFC the second that opportunity arises while I feel Jacare and especially Tate are locked in with Strikeforce.

That means this is a company with seven belts yet only three, at best, have champions right now. What exactly does that say about the current state of Strikeforce?

As we've seen for years now in organizations that aren't at the apex of the sport, the championships have a ton of turnover because fighters always are looking for greener pastures. This case is a little different, but outside of Diaz, who actually did move numbers for Showtime, is losing any of these champions going to be a huge loss for Strikeforce?

The fact of the matter is this: Overeem's belt didn't really mean a whole lot. He defended it a total of one time during his three-and-a-half years as champion and was probably more trouble than he was worth for the organization. Until this weekend when he faced a bonafide mega-star in Fedor Emelianenko, Henderson really wasn't doing much on the ratings side for Strikeforce and Cyborg has already been largely forgotten and has been out of action for more than a year despite being healthy.

Now, I don't think the championships mean a whole lot to Strikeforce's bottom line (as seem by them putting on attraction fights rather than championship fights), but the company has to make a decision if it wants to have titles. Make a decision one way or another. If they do, they need to be more proactive in setting up fights for the vacant titles. When asked about the welterweight title last week, Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker said he'd have to reassess the situation with the rest of the office. Which, reading between the lines, means they have no idea what they're going to do.

They have a built-in road to finding a heavyweight champion, and that could add more intrigue to the tournament because heavyweight title fights seem to be a big thing in MMA. The situation at light-heavyweight is going to be interesting to watch, though. If Henderson signs with the UFC, as everyone expects him to do, how quickly will Strikeforce crown a new champion there? The company is in a perilous state right now and perception is everything. Not having champions and not being proactive in filling the gaps when they come up just screams "second rate."

For Strikeforce to continue operating with credibility, it needs to fill those championship gaps and it needs to fill them now.

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Bloody Elbow

You must be a member of Bloody Elbow to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Bloody Elbow. You should read them.

Join Bloody Elbow

You must be a member of Bloody Elbow to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Bloody Elbow. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_5349_tracker