For those of you who appreciate a fighter that's unafraid to speak his mind and doesn't toe the company line, meet Strikeforce middleweight Tim Kennedy.
The highly respected special forces sniper and decorated Army Ranger recently made an appearance on MMAWeekly Radio. On the show, Kennedy freely voiced a wide range of complaints about Strikeforce and the circumstances surrounding tonight's farewell show, Strikeforce: Marquardt vs. Saffiedine. Kennedy, a two-time title contender in Strikeforce's middleweight (185 pounds) division, will face Trevor Smith on the Showtime Extreme preliminary card.
The following are some choice comments from Kennedy's radio appearance as relayed in a separate piece by MMAWeekly's Damon Martin. I'll lead with his choice words for match-makers Joe Silva and Sean Shelby, which are significant because that pair also handle the match-making duties for the UFC.
I have no idea how they work. Sean Shelby and Joe Silva, I'm sure they have a method and a process to it, but sometimes I think they just (expletive) in one hand, and they have this big dry erase board with all these names on it, and they just throw poo on one dude's name and then the other name they like highlight it and circle it and draw happy faces and like little golden stars.
Kennedy used to split his time between his military obligations and fighting, but recently decided to focus full-time on his MMA career.
Fighting one time in a year is ridiculous. Especially because the reason I left active duty service was to fight. I love special forces, I love everything about being a sniper, I love jumping out of airplanes, I love wearing a green beret, and I love being surrounded by a bunch of bad asses. I left what I loved so I could fight, and since I left I've fought like two times.
The bulk of Kennedy's disappointment revolved around a group of fighters who were initially slated to compete on tonight's card, but withdrew.
I don't know why Strikeforce would go out and say, ‘Hey, all these guys are going to be on this card,' and then a week later all these guys aren't on the card. From Luke Rockhold to Gilbert Melendez to (Jorge) Masvidal, it's like all the marquee guys that you know are going over to the UFC are conveniently injured.
I'm going over there (to the UFC) but I don't care. I'm still going to go out and fight, I'm going to fight a risky fight against a guy that's dangerous that nobody knows on the last Strikeforce card. If you're a fighter, act like a fighter and go out and fight, and stop acting like a little (expletive) and go out and fight.
Bottom line, it comes down to if you're a fighter you should fight. You shouldn't be poising yourself to leap to start the next segment of your career in a different promotion. Your loyalty has to lie with who is taking care of you. Strikeforce has taken care of me. I could have easily been like, ‘Oh, my vagina hurts too. I'm not going to fight,' and then just get on a February card because I was miraculously healed.
I'm not. I'm going to go out and fight cause that's what I think people should do.
Join us tonight on Bloody Elbow for live discussion and play-by-play of Strikeforce: Marquardt vs. Saffiedine with the preliminary card on Showtime Extreme at 8:00 p.m. ET, followed by the main card on Showtime at 10:00 p.m. ET.