The End of Strikeforce: Who actually makes it into the UFC?


Many are celebrating the death of Strikeforce, and with good reason. The matchmaking possibilities for SF fighters in the UFC are endless (I addressed a few of them here), and it's good for fans that want to see guys like Luke Rockhold and Gilbert Melendez test their skills against the best talent in the world. But there is a downside to this for some guys - namely, the fighters that might not be moving over to the UFC. There are currently about 80 fighters under contract to Strikeforce, which is a lot. A bunch are likely going to be looking for a new place to ply their trade in a little while. So, the big question is - who makes the cut?

I'll make this simple. There are 80 fighters currently listed on the Strikeforce homepage (78 are likely eligible to move over, since Kazuo Misaki retired and who knows what's up with Gina Carano). I'll break them down into three categories - guaranteed to go to the UFC, probably headed there, or possibly on on the way out. Obviously this is only my opinion, and I'm just doing it so people can see who they have and what might happen to them.

Definitely UFC bound:
Ronda Rousey, Gilbert Melendez, Daniel Cormier, Luke Rockhold, Miesha Tate, Josh Thomson, Ronaldo Souza, Tim Kennedy, Gegard Mousasi, Rafael Cavalcante, Tyron Woodley, Roger Gracie, Lorenz Larkin

Likely UFC bound:
Nate Marquardt, Pat Healy, Tarec Saffiedine, Jason High, Quinn Mulhern, Jordan Mein, Jorge Santiago, Robbie Lawler, Adlan Amagov, Derek Brunson, Yancy Medeiros, Guto Inocente, Mike Kyle, Yoel Romero, Ovince St. Preux, Gian Villante, K.J. Noons, Jorge Masvidal, Ryan Couture, Isaac Vallie-Flagg, Caros Fodor, Bobby Green, Sarah Kaufman, Cristiane Santos, Liz Carmouche, Sara McMann, Alexis Davis

Possibly on the chopping block:
Josh Barnett, Dion Staring, Joe Duarte, Billy Evangelista, Jorge Gurgel, Matt Ricehouse, James Terry, Conor Heun, Estavan Payan, Justin Wilcox, Mizuto Hirota, Adriano Martins, Michael Bravo, Roger Bowling, Nah-Shon Burrell, Ryan LaFlare, Brian Melancon, Nate Moore, Bobby Voelker, Chris Spang, Tyler Stinson, Yuri Villefort, Keith Berry, Nate James, Keith Jardine, Trevor Smith, Benji Radach, Lumumba Sayers, Anthony Smith, T.J. Cook, Virgil Zwicker, Julia Budd, Germaine de Randamie, Julie Kedzie, Amanda Nunes, Kerry Vera, Hiroko Yamanaka, Cat Zingano

Guys like Barnett and Marquardt are outliers due to their issues with UFC brass. My guess is that Barnett will not be brought over, while Nate will be. If they are committed to a legitimate women's 135 pound division, they'll probably take most of the SF ladies, but who knows. A few other things (like the outcome of the January 12th fights) will change some things as well. But by my math right now, about half of the Strikeforce roster will probably end up in the UFC, and who knows what's up with the other half. Who should be brought over and who shouldn't be?

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