Strikeforce: Rock Solid

Almost every time you hear Strikeforce discussed in public, you hear the same things: “The UFC’s drained all the talent out of Strikeforce, except for Gilbert Melendez.”   “The heavyweights are all but gone and what’s left is… what’s left.”   “It should be turned into a feeder organization for the UFC, which it kinda already is.”

Understandable to think that. After all, not just the heavyweights have moved over. Several talented non-heavyweights are now in the UFC as well. But I disagree, and the main reason I disagree is evidenced by their fight cards: they’re always stacked! They don’t produce as many events, their roster isn’t as deep, but I defy anyone to go back and watch their last event and tell me it doesn’t rival all but the best UFC cards!

Strikeforce: Rockhold vs. Kennedy looks to pack almost as big a punch. Two title fights. The return of Nate Marquardt to the cage. OK, fine: Keith Jardine’s still at it, but overall it’s a solid card. And it extends into the preliminary card, airing on Showtime Extreme.

Take a look at this card:

Showtime Main Card
Champ Luke Rockhold vs. Tim Kennedy (middleweight title bout)
Despite his soap opera name and being a surfer, Luke Rockhold is for real! Tim Kennedy’s a sharp fighter, and he’ll have to be on top of his game to match Rockhold.

Nate Marquardt vs. Tyron Woodley (welterweight title bout)
I like Tyron Woodley in this. Marquart is a powerful striker but Chael Sonnen showed the world the way you beat him: wrestling. And Woodley is a good wrestler. Look for it to get ugly!

Roger Gracie vs. Keith Jardine
Both guys coming off of losses… this has potential to surprise and be a very good match. …or it might not surprise and be a little less interesting…

Lorenz Larkin vs. Robbie Lawler
Both of these guys are tough. Both these guys have massive KO power in their hands. There’s no chance this one goes the distance (although I would’ve said the same thing about the Te Huna/Beltran fight…) This one might well be fight of the night, if not knockout of the night! Hell, it might be both!

The prelims on Showtime Extreme feature some great fights and some people you’ll be seeing making runs to titles soon. Masvidal, Healy & Couture are probably the biggest names right now in the undercard, but there’s lots of talent throughout.

Showtime Extreme Prelims
Jorge Masvidal vs. Justin Wilcox
Pat Healy vs. Mizuto Hirota
Jordan Mein vs. Tyler Stinson
Jason High vs. Nate Moore
Ryan Couture vs. Joe Duarte

Saturday night’s alright for fighting, indeed! Get a little action in!