In the main event of this coming Saturday night's (Sept. 10, 2011) Strikeforce event in Cincinnati, Ohio, Josh Barnett will square off against Sergei Kharitonov in the semifinals of the heavyweight grand prix tournament.
A win will earn "The Baby Faced Assassin" the right to face the winner of the Antonio Silva vs. Daniel Cormier bout that will happen on the very same night.
And in his typically outspoken fashion, Barnett is making his feelings clear on exactly who he thinks he'll meet in the finals once he makes it there. Here's a hint: his last name starts with a C and ends with "ormier."
A simple prediction isn't a big deal and is hardly newsworthy. It's the reason he gave for why Cormier will emerge victorious on Saturday that makes his quote worthwhile. Here's what he told MMA Fighting:
"The thing about 'Bigfoot,' he's a big guy and he's agile for a big guy, but he's not that agile and he's not that athletic. In fact, being a big guy is probably his greatest asset. You could almost say that I'm sure he's had his issues growing up with a thing like gigantism, and all the difficulty that's come from that. But gigantism is what actually allows him to be a decent fighter, because he doesn't do anything particularly awesome, but he's just massive. But all of his fights come down to him getting the takedown. Those are the ones he wins, and against Cormier I don't think that's going to happen."
Them's fighting words, folks.
Of course, if Barnett's prediction rings true, we may never get the pleasure of seeing these two mouthy heavyweights settle their differences inside the cage. Which is too bad, considering the collective skill that would be on display in the event they ever did meet in the center and slug it out.
While all this is happening and Barnett is cutting his pro wrestling inspired promos, which you can expect more of in the lead-up to this Saturday and, if he wins, in his post-fight interview, Kharitonov is getting little to no attention.
Anyone think Barnett is spending a little too much time worried about his potential opponents instead of his guaranteed foe on Saturday? Speaking of which, what combination of heavyweights would you like to see in the grand prix finals?