MMAterial Facts (02/01/10) : Strikeforce Miami Edition

February 1, 2010

Strikeforce Miami Post-Fight News and Notes

  • More Info On Problematic EA/Strikeforce Stream: A lot of questions were asked on Saturday as to what happened and who to blame for the bad EA/Strikeforce stream.  According to Sam Strayer via Josh Gross,  the executive producer of  iBN Sports (who was responsible for streaming the Strikeforce Jay Hieron vs Joe Riggs fight on Saturday):  “We had a huge influx of fans… The show went well for most. …Some with lower bandwidth had trouble due to high quality of stream. They are looking into a re-air.” Though many fans were obviously disappointed by the stream quality (or in most cases lack thereof) , there were apparently a few fans who were blessed with enough bandwidth to watch the fight.  Not focusing on only the negative, Strayer commented on the amazing turnout for the stream,   “Great night tonight. iBN Stream had some technical issues out of the venue… what an amazing turnout for the stream. Unbelievable numbers… All the fans can watch it again soon… We will keep you posted!!!” We will keep an eye on when EA/Strikeforce/iBN  plan to make the fight available again for viewing.
  • Paydays Put Into Perspective: Wes Sims (22-13), who lost to Bobby Lashley (5-0) by TKO in the first round on Saturday night, was estimated to make $30,000  (Josh Gross).  Hershel Walker (1-0), who won his debut against Greg Nagy (1-2), was estimated to make six figures, which he will donate to charity (MMAJunkie).  The way this is shaping, taking into consideration that Lashley, Diaz, Zaromskis, Manhoef, Lawler, and Cyborg will also make some good pay days, the pay scale for this event should be one of the highest in Strikeforce’s short MMA history.
  • Attendance Put Into Perspective: According to Josh Gross over at Sports Illustrated, 8,156 MMA fans packed the BankAtlantic Center on Saturday night.  To put the number in perspective, Elite XC’s CBS event “Heat”, which featured hometown product and current “MMA Viewership King” Kimbo Slice against Seth Petruzelli, drew 9,414 (7,723 paid) fans for a live gate of $826,433.  If Strikeforce Miami can draw similar numbers, which they are currently positioned to do, it will meet the gate and revenue expectations coming into this weekend.
  • Herschel Walker Brought In The Viewers and Media Attention: Some are still questioning whether or not it was a good move by Strikeforce to promote Herschel Walker the way they did and put him on the main card this weekend over the likes of arguably more deserving fighters Joe Riggs and Jay Hieron.  Let me just say that absolutely no one on the card came even close to garnering the amount of attention that Hershel Walker received for this event. Walker got heavy attention over at ESPN (Front Page Top Headlines, Top 10 Plays, ESPN Radio, PTI, MMA Live, etc), news papers and publications across the nation, most notably (Atlanta, Texas, Minnesota, Pennsylvania, Missouri, DC, and Florida), became a trending topic on Twitter, Front page of CNN, and a slew more nation wide.  In what has to be considered good news for Strikeforce, ESPN and ESPN News showed the MMA tab on their “Scores Bar” followed by  “Strikeforce:” and the results from all main card bouts plus Hieron vs Riggs.  The promotion and amount of eyeballs that Herschel Walker drew for this event had to be deemed a huge success for Strikeforce.  Strong ratings are expected for this event, and the booking of Walker by Strikeforce and Showtime was no mistake.  EliteXC had also been interested in using Walker before they folded, and it comes to no surprise that some of the biggest viewership numbers for MMA on Showtime and CBS come from the Southern states.  Another strategic move by all parties was holding this event the day before the Pro Bowl in Florida.  The booking of Walker got a  good number of NFL affiliates, players, and fans to buy tickets for this event and Showtime’s ties to the NFL (“Inside The NFL”) most likely lead to NY Jets Head Coach Rex Ryan’s infamous interview, which is still getting headlines.  Not to mention that EA Sports, who hosts the Madden Bowl on Super Bowl Week, was also on scene to promote the Madden franchise, sponsor fighters, and promote their upcoming EA Sports MMA game.  The scheduling and timing of the event was well crafted and was a good display of synergy between EA, Strikeforce, and Showtime to use the NFL’s fan base as potential draws to the event.  Now, they just need to work on better execution.
  • What’s Next For Strikeforce Miami Participants: Scott Coker has already confirmed  interest in putting together Cyborg vs Erin Toughill (145 Lbs Title), Gilbert Melendez (Strikeforce LW Champ) vs Shinya Aoki (DREAM LW Champ), Nick Diaz vs Mach Sakurai/Jay Hieron (WW Title), and Bobby Lashley vs Brett Rogers in the near future (MMAFighting).  The April CBS show is already in the plans and Fedor Emelianenko, Fabricio Werdum, Jake Shields, Dan Henderson, Gegard Mousasi, King Mo, Brett Rogers, and Bobby Lashley have all been rumored for the event.  Frank Shamrock vs Pat Miletich is also being rumored at the moment for a May Strikeforce event (FiveOuncesOfPain).  There has also been a great deal of talk that Nick Diaz or Robbie Lawler will be jumping ship to the UFC.  I don’t expect that to be happening anytime soon, since both have multiple fights left in their Strikeforce contracts.
  • Strikeforce Fighter Announcements:  Scott Coker implied (previously mentioned by Gegard Mousasi’s manager) that DREAM would be hosting LHW and HW GP’s for 2010, which would free up the lighter weight fighters from DREAM for Strikeforce to use.  Coker has already shown interest in getting Aoki, Kawajiri, Sakurai, Hansen, and JZ in Strikeforce.  Another big announcement was the Women’s 135 lbs and 145 lbs tournaments which are rumored to start around June this year.  Both tournaments will take place within 2 events (1 fight on the first event, 2 fights on the second to crown the winner) and will consist of 8 participants. Strikeforce promises to get the best female fighters around the world in order to create true contenders for Cyborg Santos and for the winner of Sarah Kaufman vs Takayo Hashi, which is for the 135 lbs title bout  set to take place in the February 26th Strikeforce Challengers card. (Sherdog)
  • Strikeforce Announces TV Deals: Distributor Shine International has completed a host of deals for its Strikeforce brand internationally, selling more than 70 hours of mixed martial arts programming in Europe, Australia and Latin America. Virgin Media Television-owned Bravo in the UK, Turner in Latin America, FX in Portugal, Ukraine’s Megasport, Seven Network in Australia and Dahlia TV in Italy have all purchased Strikeforce’s library of TV programming (MMAPayout) .  Channel Seven is one of Australia’s biggest networks, and the UK fans were buzzing this weekend after watching the Strikeforce Miami event on Bravo.
  • UPDATE: Looks like MMAJunkie is reporting that Strikeforce Miami drew 517K viewers, which is a 52% ratings increase over the previous Strikeforce event on Showtime (Strikeforce Evolution) and finishes in second place behind Strikeforce: Carano vs Cyborg who drew 576K viewers and beat Strikeforce: Kimbo vs Tank, which drew 511K.  This is along the range I predicted above, and has to be considered a success for Strikeforce and Showtime, despite Spike TV counter-programming the event with UFC 107, which drew 2.2 million viewers.

QUICK HITS

  • UFC to Offer Spanish PPV Broadcasts (MMAPayout’s Perspective)
  • Strikeforce Miami: Payout Perspective (MMAPayout’s Perspective)
  • Diaz shares spotlight with Walker at Strikeforce: Miami (Sports Illustrated)
  • Diaz bludgeons Zaromskis; Walker wins (ESPN)
  • Despite debut MMA win, NFL great Herschel Walker not a lock for a second fight (MMAJunkie)
  • New York Jets coach Rex Ryan issues apology after “Strikeforce: Miami” bird-flipping (MMAJunkie)
  • Coker Says Aoki, Sakurai, Toughill Will Get Title Shots (MMAFighting)
  • Coker Eyeing Melendez-Aoki, Women’s Tourneys in 2010 (Sherdog)
  • Strikeforce Post-Mortem: Punches in Bunches, Football’s Revenge, and More (Sherdog)
  • Tim Kennedy latest addition to “EA Sports MMA” videogame roster (MMAJunkie)
  • King Of The Cage Is Coming To HDNet on February 12 (HDNet)
  • Despite initial one-sided affair, Strikeforce’s Robbie Lawler said he stuck to game plan (MMAJunkie)
  • Free agent Jay Hieron still not guaranteed title shot with new Strikeforce champ Nick Diaz (MMAJunkie)
  • Bellator adds DREAM vet Joe Warren to season-two featherweight tourney (MMAJunkie)
  • Shine Fights signs Abu Dhabi champ Braulio Estima to multi-fight deal (MMAJunkie)
  • Weekend Rundown: Yamaguchi Captures KOTC Crown (Sherdog)
  • Overeem’s Trainer Likes Chances vs. Fedor (MMAFighting)
  • On Mend, Tyson Griffin Could Be In Vancouver (MMAWeekly)
  • Freestyle Cage Fighting 39 Results (MMARising)

IMAGE OF THE DAY

All Elbows: Robbie Lawler vs Melvin Manhoef

TV LISTINGS

  • HDNet Fights Presents K-1 Classics (2005 World GP Finals)  at 8 PM ET on HDNet (02/05/10)
  • InsideMMA (Brendan Schaub, Matt Mitrione, & Dermontti Dawson) at 9 PM ET on HDNet (02/05/10)
  • HDNet Fights Presents “Furious Finishes III” at 10 PM ET on HDNet (02/05/10)
  • Best of Pride FC at 10 PM ET/PT on Spike (02/05/10)
  • UFC 109 at 10 PM ET on PPV (02/06/10)

UPCOMING EVENTS

  • UFC 109: Couture vs Coleman at 10 PM ET on PPV (02/06/10)
  • HDNet Fights: King of the Cage – Vengeance at 10 PM ET on HDNet (02/12/10)
  • UFC 110: Nogueira vs Velazquez at 10 PM ET on PPV (02/20/10)
  • Strikeforce Challengers: Prangley vs  Amoussou at 11 PM ET/PT on Showtime (02/26/10)
  • WEC 47: Bowles vs Cruz on at 10 PM ET on Versus (03/06/10)

3 Responses to “MMAterial Facts (02/01/10) : Strikeforce Miami Edition”

  1. uberVU - social comments on February 1st, 2010 5:04 PM

    Social comments and analytics for this post…

    This post was mentioned on Twitter by MMASupremacy: Post-Fight Strikeforce Miami News and Notes: http://bit.ly/aVc2fk

  2. Scoops On EA/Strikeforce Stream Issues, Lawler or Diaz Jumping Ship, & Women GP's! - Sherdog Mixed Martial Arts Forums on February 1st, 2010 6:23 PM

    […] […]

  3. Jose Mendoza on February 2nd, 2010 11:41 AM

    Looks like MMAJunkie is reporting that Strikeforce Miami drew 517K viewers, which is a 52% ratings increase over the previous Strikeforce event on Showtime (Strikeforce Evolution) and finishes in second place behind Strikeforce: Carano vs Cyborg who drew 576K viewers and beat Strikeforce: Kimbo vs Tank, which drew 511K. This is along the range I predicted above, and has to be considered a success for Strikeforce and Showtime, despite Spike TV counter-programming the event with UFC 107, which drew 2.2 million viewers.

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