As if losing half the interesting fights on the next UFC card wasn’t piss off enough, now the Strikeforce Heavyweight Tournament has been rendered impotent with the removal of Alistair Overeem. Why? Because Overeem and Zuffa got into a pissing match, and the fans got caught in the golden stream. Here’s Alistair’s side:
Overeem today revealed on MMA Fighting’s “The MMA Hour” that the promotion requested he return to action against Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva (16-2 MMA, 3-1 SF) on Sept. 10. However, the Dutch striker said he asked for more time and preferred an October booking.
With the company planning for a September event to host the promotion’s heavyweight grand prix semifinal bouts, some obvious tension was built. Overeem said the company threatened his release even before today’s official announcement.
“What’s going to happen next, I don’t know,” Overeem told MMA Fighting. “I’ve had some threats of cutting me out of the tournament if I don’t participate. I don’t know if they’re going to do it.”
And here’s Dana White confirming that Overeem is out of the tournament, with Daniel Cormier replacing him:
“Sept. 10 was the date Showtime wants us to go, so it’s the date we’ve got to go,” White said. “It’s unfortunate that Alistair is unavailable, but situations like this are why there are alternates in the tournament.”
“Overeem is under contract, and when his pinky toe heals up, we’ll get him another fight,” White said.
There’s a lot of lameness to go around. You may remember the year and a half Alistair Overeem was decidedly difficult to pin down for a Strikeforce title defense. This reeks of more of the same. Could Overeem fight in September? Yeah. But he ‘prefers’ October. So September won’t happen. FUCK YOU, OVEREEM.
And on the UFC’s side, who’s bright idea was it to shoehorn the next round of the Heavyweight grand prix into a specific date without talking to the four participants? And who decided it was no big deal to replace Overeem with Daniel Cormier and just roll on without the #1 seed / goddamn champion in the tournament like it’s no big deal? Sounds like a Dana White move. An egotistical, tug-o-war, political battle Dana move. FUCK YOU, DANA.
All I know is that after a month where half the fights we were supposed to get got canceled, it’s very uncool for the Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix to get borked over something that easily could have been fixed if both parties were willing to be fucking reasonable. Screw you both, guys. I’m going home.