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Great Ideas in MMA History – A Bellator vs Strikeforce Card on New Year’s Day

Bellator founder and CEO Bjorn Rebney is a guy who’s not afraid to think outside the box, and one of the ideas he’s on board with has the ring of genius about it.

A Bellator vs. Strikeforce New Year’s Eve event.

I like it.

Scratch that, I love it.

The Bellator honcho, known for his fast-and-loose conception of what MMA should be, has been pushing the  idea for months but he’s getting no love from Strikeforce for what is surely the most brilliant promotional concept in quite some time.

If you want to run with the big dogs (read the UFC and Zuffa), you have to be willing to climb in the ring, and Scott Coker would do well to sign up for the idea.

Imagine, if you will, a card which includes Gilbert Melendez, Eddie Alvarez, Roger Huerta, Dan Henderson, Hector Lombard and a cast of others. That’s the kind of event which would get any MMA fan foaming at the mouth, and it would serve an additional purpose. It would be a clear announcement that both Strikeforce and Bellator are willing to play on the main stage, and that’s great for the fans, fighters and the sport of MMA in general.

Fighters have known it since the dawn of time immemorial; to be the best, you have to beat the best, and this kind of event wouldl generate the kind of monstrous buzz that has solely been the province of the UFC up until now. The resulting shockwave – should Bellator, Strikeforce and their television partners have the foresight to make it happen – would have repercussions far outside the event itself and would go a long way to taking MMA further into the consciousness of mainstream sports fans.

Eddie Alvarez likes the idea, and he gave Scott Coker a piece of his mind on that topic:

“Scott, It seems as though your lightweight champion keeps on calling me out on every interview and I have no problem with that. I’ve never said anything about the kid and I would never say anything at all. Never even approached anybody about fighting Gilbert Melendez. He just doesn’t shut up, every other interview he’s talking about fighting me ‘Oh I want to fight Eddie Alvarez, I want to fight Eddie Alvarez’ and it really makes me look bad because I see it [the interview] the next day later. So Bjorn says it’s OK, I say it’s OK, Gilbert is telling the world that he wants to fight me. I assume you’re the only one left to agree.”

Coker did at least have a non-answer answer for Alvarez here.

MiddleEasy.com tracked Rebney down at Bellator 29, and as always, Rebney was forthright and damn interesting:
[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CuhWX7AKO0E[/youtube]

13 COMMENTS
  • fanoftna33 says:

    It is a great idea but at least in Hendersons case it wont happen on new years eve. Eddie vs Melendez would be a great match but if Aoki can take Eddie down what chance does he really have vs Gilbert?
    Huerta vs Noones would be awesome.

    Agree or Disagree: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  • Jak says:

    Seems like Halterman articles are just anti-UFC/DW type articles.

    As far as Bellator/SF… probably SF’s most boring card this year was when they went outside the box and brought in 3 title fights, Aoki/Melendez, Shields/Miller and Mousasi/Lawal.

    Monstorous buzz? really? Seems like the OP i overselling Lombard and Hendo and co. actual media value. It’s not as though these are all household names.

    Just because it looks good on paper, doesn’t mean it will deliver, and at the end of the day, one of these organizations could risk losing all the fights on the card, and i can’t imagine SF wants more of it’s marquee fighters losing. Fedor, Hendo, Mousasi, Aoki, all these guys they try to market lost this year…

    I guess i’ll get “disliked” if i don’t simply bash the UFC in these articles.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 12 Thumb down 11

  • Dufresne says:

    I like the idea, but sadly I don’t see it happening. At least not very soon.

    Well-Done. Thumb up 12 Thumb down 0

  • Rece Rock says:

    Not happening…
    P.S. the UFC Newyears card kinda looks like this so far….

    Frankie Edgar vs. Gray Maynard
    Shane Carwin vs. Roy Nelson
    Thiago Silva vs. Brandon Vera
    Chris Leben vs. Brian Stann

    And possibly Silva vs. Belfort headling…

    Agree or Disagree: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 7

  • MCM says:

    I like the idea too. It’s a clear cut battle for 2nd place.
    Strikeforce has a ton of UFC rejects and 1 or 2 homegrown stars. Bellator has a ton of homegrown stars and 1 or 2 UFC rejects.
    It’s not only Promotion vs Promotion, but Business model vs. Business model. Maybe that’s why Coker doesn’t want make this thing happen.

    Agree or Disagree: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1

  • Niv says:

    Personally this is the kind of thing that really needs to happen in mma. I don’t see any of this as being anti UFC or anything like that, it’s pro mma and I’ve always liked the cross promotion idea anyways.

    SF already shares talent with Dream as witnessed with Aoki vs Melendez, so why not risk it and go for a big show. I think most fight fans will really enjoy it.

    I know I’ve said this before but UFC has co-promoted with Pride FC in past years and I’d love nothing more than to see them feel like they should participate in future events. Why should we be pidgeon hold into seeing the fights we want based on what promoter has someone locked up? If Fedor and Dana can’t get along it really wouldn’t matter as long as they can put a guy like Brock in there with him. Why not see Nick Diaz scrap with GSP, the list of enticing fights would be endless, so in this regard I say good luck and I hope they make it happen.

    Agree or Disagree: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

  • GIKE MOLDBERG says:

    Bellator is where it’s at right now-While StrikeForce is a complete mess-If this supoosed co promotion doesn’t happen, it will be because of SF-I woud still pick Gilbert Melendez over Eddie Alvarez based on Gil having more ways to win and better game planning

    Agree or Disagree: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 0

  • Rece Rock says:

    “It’s not only Promotion vs Promotion, but Business model vs. Business model. Maybe that’s why Coker doesn’t want make this thing happen.” – MCM

    YATZEE!!!!!!

    Agree or Disagree: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 3

  • Guthookd says:

    Good column T E Halterman. Nice work.

    I agree. This is a great idea. It would be a shame if BFC lost all the fights, but that’s not likely.

    Love the idea of Hendo vs. Lombard and Gil vs. Ed.

    IF they actually put this together I will buy the PPV just to show support (as opposed to catching it at a bar).

    C’mon Coker…you puss.

    Agree or Disagree: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

  • Dufresne says:

    Love the idea of Hendo vs. Lombard

    That would probably be my most anticipated matchup, but it’d probably have to be fought at 205 since Hendo has said he’s tired of that cut. Lombard has fought at 205 once before so I doubt that would be a problem, especially since Lombard has already said he wants to fight Hendo.

    Agree or Disagree: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

  • FightFan313 says:

    I’ve been waiting for this kind of talk for a long time. I am very interested in the match ups that will happen. It should be about the fighters, not the organization, this brings fans together. I love it.

    Agree or Disagree: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  • Iron Monkey says:

    Sorry…not a great idea. Strikeforce and Bellator need to stay in the minor leagues and not get stupid. The UFC will crush them if they start acting up. It sounds like Coker knows his role.

    Agree or Disagree: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 4

  • cutman says:

    Well I guess we no which organization is not scared to fight there best fighters against another organizations best fighters so the FANS can have the fights they want. They are just not recycling a certain group of fighters fighting each other 2 or 3 times…Bellator rocks boys,,,, and they have the fortitude to do it…… Monkey lets just keep the other orgs. down so we can get some of the most boring fights I have seen in a long time. I do not agree with just having 1 organization it leads to bad things. The UFC has been our savior. But as MMA gets bigger we need more than 1 organization setting fights and salaries we are a country that has survived on free enterprise and we need to support all MMA not just the big guy. So lets hope the UFC doesn’t crush them otherwise we will only get to see the match-ups they want ( which just have not been all that entertaining lately) not the match-ups we want….

    Agree or Disagree: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

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