Last night’s UFC on FX was supposed to be the coming out party for the last two Strikeforce middleweight champions. Luke Rockhold and Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza were making their long-awaited UFC debuts in the top two fights on the card. What transpired though were outcomes at the opposite ends of the spectrum, leaving one fighter overjoyed and the other extremely disappointed.
It might be nothing but the coincidence UFC president Dana White says it is but tomorrows UFC on FOX 7 main card should be dubbed “UFC vs Strikeforce”. Each of the four main card bouts that will air live on FOX features a UFC veteran against a former Strikeforce fighter.
Though Strikeforce is no more, many of its former fighters continue to fight on in the UFC. Showing that the now defunct organization had some great fighters step into its ring, five former Strikeforce fighters hope to continue their winning ways at UFC 158.
Tonight’s UFC 156 started the invasion of Strikeforce fighters making their UFC debut following the promotions final event. Three debuting former Strikeforce fighters fought on the preliminary card against very tough competition and came out with a clean 3-0 sweep.
Days after Strikeforce held its final event; the UFC announced that several of the promotions fighters have joined the ranks of the Ultimate Fighting Championship. Not all of the fighters are coming over but this also wasn’t the complete and final list, expect a few more to be announced in the coming weeks.
Former Strikeforce lightweight champion Gilbert Melendez is finally getting his wish. Unable to defend his title at last weekend’s final Strikeforce event due to injury, Melendez instead will get an immediate title shot against UFC lightweight champion Benson Henderson.
While the majority of the fights on last night’s Strikeforce: Marquardt vs. Saffiedine card appeared one-sided on paper, the middleweight bout between Tim Kennedy and Trevor Smith wasn’t one of them. Sure Kennedy had the name recognition and betting line behind him but his opponent was not push over and he proved that during their bout.