Strikeforce's second show of 2012 is in the books with another great performance from the women. In the main event Ronda Rousey continued her streak of breaking bones when she snapped Miesha Tate's arm and forced the former champion to tap. The night wasn't without controversy as it was discovered that prelim fighter Brandon Saling has an extremely questionable past including but not limited to: neo-nazi tattoos and a history of sexual misconduct. There will obviously be more on this topic later today and this upcoming week but for now let's take a look at the biggest winners and losers at Strikeforce: Tate vs. Rousey.
Ronda Rousey: Ronda Rousey is a beast. The fact that she tells you to your face what she's going to do and then does it is the craziest thing. She talked a lot to hype of the fight which can put her in an awkward situation had she lost. She didn't though. Instead she added another arm to her trophy case. Also coming out to Joan Jett "Bad Reputation" was in the top five best walk outs. I'd shake her hand and congratulate her but I'm afraid she'll just armbar me. Super impressive win.
Kazuo Misaki: Dropping down to welterweight was a great decision for Misaki. He made Paul Daley look like an amateur striker and kept pressuring. If there is a knock against him, it's that he gave up the takedown easily when Daley's entire game plan was to try and lay and pray to a decision. I wouldn't mind seeing Misaki vs Jason High in the future.
Lumumba Sayers: I was pretty hard on Lumumba Sayers because I just didn't think he had the overall skills to compete at the top level. Up until the Antwain Britt fight he never demonstrated punching power and just seemed to be a guy who was on his way to washing out of Strikeforce. Instead he does a pro wrestling style suplex and finished Scott Smith with a beautiful guillotine. I'm not sure if Lumumba Sayers "is for real" but he sure is entertaining.
Sarah Kaufman: Sarah entered the cage and fought like a woman who wanted to prove that she deserved a shot at the title. I can't remember her ever having that kind of output when striking but she was throwing combinations for the entire fight. The only negative was the last round when Davis had her in trouble but a win is a win and Kaufman will be getting the next shot at Rousey.
Alexis Davis: I know what you're thinking, how can she be a winner when she lost her fight? Easily if you saw the gutsy performance she put on. She could have cracked mentally in the first and second round when the doctors inspected her cut but she stayed in the fight and almost pulled off the win in the third. Maybe a fight with Tate when her arm finally heals?
Losers and other thoughts after the jump...
Miesha Tate: On the flip side, Miesha Tate tried playing a promotional game at the weigh ins when she got in Ronda's face. Then when Ronda responded she asked for her to get fined. Add to that her boyfriend's misogynistic tweets and Tate had a lot to prove. Unfortunately, the only thing she proved is that her arm breaks just like everyone else's and that she really should have trained for the armbar.
Josh Thomson: Well at least he knows that was an awful fight.
K.J. Noons: See Josh Thomson.
Paul Daley: Paul Daley's performance last night was a first for MMA. It was the first time that a striker fell in love with his wrestling. Fans often complain about wrestlers showing off their awful stand up and they got to see what happens when a striker tried to wrestle. I'm sure the losses in his career made him think "If Tyron Woodley and Josh Koscheck can do it, so can I" but that wasn't the case. Because Paul Daley lost. Also, a Brit winning with wrestling? That'll be the day.
Scott Smith: Am I the only one that is now getting really depressed watching Scott Smith fight? I can't be the only one. I don't know what he's going to do but at this point he shouldn't be fighting. His mechanics are slowed to a crawl and he's essentially getting paid to lose. If you're a fighter you shouldn't want to be in that role. Stop fighting and find something else because your career is depressing me.
Brandon Saling: You're a fucking loser. I'm not even talking about your loss to Roger Bowling. I'm saying you, Brandon Saling, are a loser. That you were even given the opportunity to fight shows that someone either at Showtime, Strikeforce, or the Ohio Commission really screwed up. I don't ever want to see this guy fight again and he didn't deserve that referee stoppage. What an awful human.
Strikeforce/Showtime/Ohio Athletic Commission: I said it above but who the hell made the decision to allow Brandon Saling to fight? I'm not only disgusted that he's a neo-nazi with an 88 tattoo surrounded by SS bolts but he and a friend allegedly raped a 13 year old girl. How the hell does no one do a google search and say "no fucking way"? All three parties need to rectify this situation because they've allowed a legitimate scumbag to fight on a national card.
- Pat Healy was very impressive. I know that Strikeforce is dead set on Melendez/Thomson III but if we're basing the title shots on performances, Healy should be fighting for the title. In my opinion he creates an interesting match up with Gilbert Melendez based on his grinding style and toughness. Hopefully he's get a shot soon because I enjoy watching him fight.
- Jacare did what he needed to do. Bristol Marunde wasn't brought in to win. Nice win by Jacare, it's obvious he used the fight to test out his stand up.
- Ryan Couture continues to develop and I was impressed with him last night. Conor Heun was a huge step up in competition and Couture passed the test with flying colors. His stand up looked solid and he's active on the mat when looking for submissions. I doubt he becomes the next Randy but that's okay. He should just be the best Ryan Couture.
- The booth of Pat, Mauro, and Frank was awful last night. Showtime is responsible for the production and it is their call to put these three in the booth. In a perfect world Pat Miletich would be working with a more professional commentary team and though this would be unpopular with many of you, I wouldn't be opposed to a Pat Miletich/Gus Johnson team. It would be Strikeforce's answer to Anik/Florian and Rogan/Goldie.