Bellator’s Askren vs. GSP offer...
If Askren fights GSP, it works several ways in Bellator’s favor, but these two in particular: 1. It gives Bellator legitimacy that it has fighters that are UFC caliber right out of the gates; and 2. If Askren wins, it puts Bellator on a "supposed" even playing field (even though one shining star doesn’t necessarily light the whole universe, Bellator might advertise it that way.) One could compare Strikeforce to the UFC if one is looking for a tested comparison when fighters switch organizations.
Bellator’s offer also helps extinguish a potential legal battle similar to the one Bellator endured with Alvarez. By laying down this "GSP vs. Askren" offer, Bellator hopes to legitimize Bellator’s position of competitiveness to the legal world, one that doesn’t have a firm grasp on what is MMA. Let’s face it, judges and courts and law don’t understand the nuances of "MMA" and see it in terms of black and white, just a bunch of guys punching each other in a cage, nothing more, nothing less. And, when contract matching time comes, if Askren tries to escape his Bellator contract, Bellator can say, "look, judge, we tried to match his contract, UFC’s best, vs. ours, and the UFC wouldn’t accept…what more can we do?"
Bellator doesn’t want its talent shelved once again so it is just taking steps to avoid issues in the future and gain legitimacy w/ the courts. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying Bellator fighters suck or anything, they are legit, but champ for champ…I don’t know. To be fair, even Bellator acknowledges Askren is ranked number 6 or 5 in the world, so have him do what Shields did after coming to the UFC from Strikeforce. Win one, then go for the gold. Fair is fair.