May 19, 2012; San Jose, CA, USA; Josh Barnett (right) fights Daniel Cormier (left) during the heavyweight tournament final bout of the Strikeforce World Grand Prix at HP Pavilion. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-US PRESSWIRE
After his dominating victory over Josh Barnett this past Sat., night (May 19, 2012), Daniel Cormier won the Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix title and in the process, staked his claim as a very dangerous fighter that all heavyweights in the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) ranks will have to contend with very soon.
In the interim, Cormier, who is undefeated at 10-0, still has business outside the Octagon to tend to. That's because even though he won the grand prix title and there are basically no more heavies in Strikeforce to contend with, the former Olympic wrestle tells The MMA Hour that he still has to compete once more with the San Jose-based promotion before he can make his eventual jump to the UFC.
But who can possibly fit the bill to face off against the current tournament champion?
"I think if there is a plus one and Zuffa's going to send someone over it is going to have to be someone that is very good you know? Maybe Carwin, as he's coming back. He's a guy with a lot of name value and I don't necessarily know if that's a step up (from Josh Barnett) but that is somebody with name value. Or, if one of the guys loses from the card this weekend. But then it really limits because if Frank Mir loses I'm pretty sure he is not going to want to come to Strikeforce to fight me where if he loses he has everything to lose. When Cain beats Bigfoot Silva, what are they going to do, send him (Silva) back to Strikeforce to fight me again? Nothing really adds up right now, I don't know, I don't know how to guess what they are going to do. There just is not that many step ups out there better than Josh Barnett. Especially that Josh Barnett. That Josh Barnett was 248 pounds, was in shape, was going hard, we had every intention on getting it down Saturday night, but that dude Saturday night came to fight. There are not too many guys that are a step up from that Josh Barnett that showed up on Saturday."
There are essentially no more heavyweights remaining with the Strikeforce organization and any big man that has any relevance in mixed martial arts (MMA) today, all fight for the UFC. So to say the options are limited is an understatement.
Perhaps the UFC can bring in one of their own big men to contend with Cormier, or they can try to convince Showtime to scratch the whole "plus one" fight stipulation and bring him over and have him fight the winner of this weekend's (May 26, 2012) UFC 146 main event between Junior dos Santos and Frank Mir to unify the titles once and for all.
Anyone have any other ideas?