The Zuffa purchase of Strikeforce opened the door to an entirely new landscape in mixed martial arts.
The little promotion that could from San Jose now has massive marketing muscle behind it, along with a top notch team that knows how to organize and showcase the best fights in the world.
And that's the real kicker in this buyout -- the ability to put on true sport superfights. Dana White, however, dropped the proverbial turd in the punchbowl when he claimed everything would be "business as usual." Then again, he also said he wouldn't be attending Strikeforce events but he sure as hell wasn't in Las Vegas last night.
There's hope yet that we'll get to see some gargantuan crossover fights and no one wants it more than Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker:
"I think, you know what? Let the Strikeforce guys fight the UFC guys. I'd love to see it. To me, Alistair Overeem versus Cain Velasquez? Let's do it. Or Fedor fighting Brock Lesnar. ...There's nothing to say these guys can't fight each other."
"I love Strikeforce and I want to see it continue for many years, and I'm going to work my ass off to make sure it's profitable. ... This roster that we've built at Strikeforce is unbelievable, and everybody knows that. We're going to continue to put these great fights on, and we have the fighters to do that. But to me, why can't you build the AFC and the NFC and let's do a Super Bowl fight? That's what I'd like to see."
If last night's (April 9, 2011) event in San Diego, California, showed us anything, it's that Strikeforce can definitely stage highly successful events without needing to merge directly with the UFC.
And with a few tweaks by the Zuffa production team, the show was quite possibly presented better than its ever been.
But, as Coker opines, that doesn't mean there can't be a few crossover fights between the best the two promotions have to offer.
Consider Gilbert Melendez, who easily dispatched of top lightweight Tatsuya Kawajiri in the co-main event of "Diaz vs. Daley." Is there a worthy challenge to his 155-pound strap at the moment? What about Nick Diaz, who boxed up Paul Daley inside of one round? Anyone credible out there for him to throw hands with?
Now tell me this -- of all the names that popped into your head, how many are currently employed and fighting under the UFC banner?
Scott Coker would love to see crossover superfights ... would you?