At the announcement of the Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix, there was a really solid argument that the winner could be the #1 HW, if not a close second to the UFC HW Champion. 8 months later, here is what we've got:
Fyodor Emelianenko is pummeled by Antonio Silva, Fabricio Werdum has an incredibly weak performance against Alistair Overeem (who did not impress in this showing either, not entirely his fault, but the fact remains). Then to add insult to injury, Overeem bows out of the tournament giving an opening to rising prospect Daniel Cormier, who against all odds IS NOW IN THE FINALS?!
Josh Barnett rising to the top of his side of the bracket was no surprise, but along the way Brett Rogers, Andrei Arlovski and now after last night Sergei Kharitonov all looked like shit. There's no other way to put it. There's just been a consistent pattern here, a lot of these fighters win one fight in impressive fashion (Werdum, Bigfoot, Kharitonov) then immediately shit the bed in their following match. Props to Barnett for an impressive showing but every loss suffered by the aforementioned trio were not results of closely contested fights, they each got embarrassed.
There is a really solid chance that Daniel Cormier, previously ranked #20 here, has the chance of winning this tournament? Does it mean that he is a true threat to the division and potentially Junior Dos Santos or Cain Velasquez? I think it is more likely that this shows just how weak the Strikeforce Heavyweight division was after all.
Given the "what have you done for me lately" nature of the sport, their rank skyrockets immediately following one big win, which I think has artificially made them appear to be a lot better on paper than they are in practice.
This Grand Prix hasn't provided us so much with a new HW contender but really just proven the talent level outside the UFC truly is on a lower tier.