Strikeforce, Sherdog, and EA Announce “MMA Fighter Exchange” Project

October 11, 2010

During the Strikeforce: Diaz vs Noons II post fight press conference, Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker announced the “MMA Fighter Exchange” program with partners (Crave Online) and EA (Electronic Arts).

Watch worlds collide as Strikeforce MMA giants Gegard Mousasi, Jacare Souza, Jason “Mayhem” Miller and Luke Rockhold take four up and coming fighters under their wing. See these fighters grow as they fly across the globe to train in new fighting arts in foreign countries. Follow each fighter’s page as they post daily blogs, photos, video and live twitter feeds about what it’s like to push their bodies and minds, learning from top fighters and famous trainers in unfamiliar lands, striving towards their dream shot at fighting in an upcoming Strikeforce Event!! (Sherdog) will be providing a behind the scenes look throughout the fight camps with blog and video coverage of each fighter.  After completing their respective training camps, the protégés return to prepare for their debut at the December 4th STRIKEFORCE promotion where their undercard fights will be streamed live by

Here is video from the post fight press conference thanks to TWinCombatSports:

MMA Fighter Exchange Website:

MMA Fighter Exchange Twitter:

Payout Perspective:

There were a number of announcements from Strikeforce during the week leading to their October 9th event in San Jose, most having a great impact on where the company looks to be heading in future.  This is another pretty significant step on their part, adding Sherdog (Crave Online) as a partner for this upcoming project with EA. Not only are they gaining a strong partner, but their fighters will get more exposure, new talent will be introduced in a way where fans can follow their progress, and then MMA fans will witness their progress in an upcoming Challengers card.

This appears to be the premise of what a potential Strikeforce TV show (along with the help of their partners EA and Sherdog) may look like  on TV in the future, keeping their motto of strong synergies among it’s partners as key to their success in the future.  The website has a ton of information, interviews, and videos with each fighter and “Big” John McCarthy appears to be a big part of the project as well. Stay tuned to MMAPayout as we will track the evolution of this interesting venture.

16 Responses to “Strikeforce, Sherdog, and EA Announce “MMA Fighter Exchange” Project”

  1. Tweets that mention Strikeforce, Sherdog, and EA Announce “MMA Fighter Exchange” Project : The Business of MMA -- on October 11th, 2010 3:39 AM

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by, MMA Supremacy. MMA Supremacy said: Strikeforce, Sherdog, and EA Announce “MMA Fighter Exchange” Project #MMA #MMAPayout @EASportsMMA #Sherdog #Crave […]

  2. Brad Wharton on October 11th, 2010 5:17 AM

    This is all well and good – but I’d like to see Strikeforce focusing on what they have on their plate currently before ordering more side dishes.

  3. Matt C. on October 11th, 2010 10:06 AM

    How is Big John McCarthy involved?

    If he is going to be in the business of MMA and work directly with promotions like Strikeforce is there a conflict of interest in being a ref?

  4. Jose Mendoza on October 11th, 2010 10:21 AM

    Matt C.:

    Look at the introduction video, which Big John is featured:

    Also, Big John is a big part of the EA Sports MMA game. Not exactly sure yet what type of roll he will have in the project, but does not necessarily mean conflict of interest here.

  5. jj on October 11th, 2010 3:13 PM

    Sherdog openly backing and working with one promotion is one of many reasons I stopped going to that website. How can they be a credible news site when they have a business partner who they’re pushing over another promotion? I get it… the Sherdog crowd feels burned by the UFC but becoming the marketing wing of Strkeforce is not a good thing for a “news” site.

  6. Jose Mendoza on October 11th, 2010 3:29 PM


    Technically, if you go to the website, Strikeforce is not mentioned, but the program uses Strikeforce fighters and the fighters will fight on the Strikeforce undercard, sponsored by EA Sports. Sherdog is the host of the material and will televise the undercard fights.

    AOL (MMAFighting) and Yahoo are partners with the UFC, MMAjunkie with HDNet. Those partnerships are much more involved than this announcement.

  7. Eric Nitsch on October 11th, 2010 6:10 PM

    I think that it is a brilliant, and cheap, way of getting fans interested in future Strikeforce fighters. It makes sense for Sherdog by gaining additional exposure from some of the more casual Strikeforce fans. Then there is always the possibility that one of these guys becomes a superstar. The only real downside that I see is that if the content is poorly put together or (as has happened in the past with Strikeforce) if the company fails to promote and stay in touch with the fanbase. If done correctly this could help bridge the promotional gaps between events.

  8. Brain Smasher on October 12th, 2010 12:22 AM

    Good post JJ. Jose has a good point with his examples but that doesnt take into account Sherdog and their recent credibility issues,. The Josh Gross fiasco. They have started a witch hunt against the UFC after press creds got revoked to online sites and it has never ended. Im sure Jose will defend them since this is a partnership with SF and it seems that he works for them in some compacity judging solely by his contributions to this site.

    Fact is Sherdog is the UFC of the online MMA community. They have piggybacked MMA to the top over other sites who were first or just as big a part in the early days. They are king over old sites like Adcombat and the underground because they are very shrewed(sp) and will jump at every dollar they see while sacrificing them journalistic integrity. With all the money Sherdog has made. What have they ever put back into the sport? The UFC keeps them from making a buck and Sherdog acts like the UFC are bad when they are both doing the same thing.

  9. Monte on October 12th, 2010 7:31 AM

    Brian, Josh Gross hasn’t worked for Sherdog in years. What are you talking about??

  10. mmaguru on October 12th, 2010 8:01 AM

    I’m not sure about the business end of Sherdog’s dealings and I can see that you have a negative view of the sites practices, however, I believe the feud between the UFC and Sherdog is based on integrity. Sherdog does not feel, like a lot of real journalists, that the UFC should be able to dictate content.

    The real issue is around credentialing. The UFC has given and taken away credentials from Sherdog over the years for various reasons but always around what was reported on the site or by one of their writers. You don’t need credentials to cover a sport, just look at how HD Net have been able to cover MMA and they didn’t have credentials until recently to the UFC.

  11. Jose Mendoza on October 12th, 2010 12:47 PM

    mmaguru, Brain Smasher:

    Not sure what Brain means by credibility issues within the MMA media, because really, who doesn’t within the business?

    UFC gave credentials back to Sherdog not so long ago when they were in talks with ESPN/ABC to possibly ink a deal. As part of the negotiations, since Sherdog is partners with ESPN, the UFC gave credentials back to Sherdog. Once talks fell through, the UFC pulled their credentials soon after the next “incident” occurred.

    Also, the issues with Sherdog and UFC are so old, that Loretta Hunt and Josh Gross don’t even work there anymore. The battle will forever continue I guess. =)

  12. BrainSmasher on October 12th, 2010 2:20 PM

    I didnt say Gross was still with Sherdog. I just said that he was was the one who started this feud. anyone who isnt bias know the original cred gate was good business buy the UFC. It was the only way to get real journalist to cover the sport from reputable media sources. But Sherdog supported Gross and Hunt while they airred their issues on their site. When you have that kind of past you dont sign partnerships with a fight org when you want to be taken serious as a news site. IF Sherdog wanted to run fights it would be no big deal. Ultimate Athlete was a magazine who ran a couple MMA events. They didnt merge with a MMA promotion to share fanbases like Sherdog and Strikeforce are doing. They lose credibility. You can claim its not a partnership all you want. It is.

  13. mmaguru on October 12th, 2010 9:25 PM

    You hooked me on this one – all Gross did at the time was reveal the winner of a realty show. It was a mistake and he didn’t know at that it would cause such a fuss. Dana, like him or hate him, is a control freak. Let’s call a spade a spade. If he doesn’t like your line of questioning or an article you write he goes on a tirade. He has the right to credential who or who he doesn’t want to, he owns the company. But to try to spin it in a way that Dana is trying to weed out the “bad” journalists is silly. Josh Gross is one the original true journalists of this sport and he may be opinionated, but he knows his stuff and has garnered a lot of credibility over the years. I’m not sure we can say such about guys like Ariel Helwani who seems like a really nice guy but a journalist he is not. He’s a fan with a camera and that pretty much sums it up.

  14. BrainSmasher on October 12th, 2010 10:58 PM

    LOL. Gross leaked it by accident. You must be kidding. It was spite and everyone knows it. You can praise him all you want. The “original true journalist” leaked the results not of the first season or the second season. But after covering the show for many seasons he “accidentally” leaked it when no other journalist on any other site has ever done this. Sounds like a true pro to me. Even was training Gurgel school during his stint and knew when he lost, when he lost, and who he lost to. Yet even without being restricted by a journalistic code the code of human decency was enough that i never told anyone despite being a regular member of a couple mma forums. So either he is a scumbag who purposely leaked the results or he is the worst journalist ever and did it by accident and made by far the worst mistake of any journalist even the fanboy hack wannabe journalists. Which is it?

  15. BrainSmasher on October 12th, 2010 11:01 PM

    “It was a mistake and he didn’t know at that it would cause such a fuss. ”

    really? Fighters are threatened by law suit if they reveal fight results(as on all reality shows) but Gross didn’t know this? He was going to ruin the ending of a show millions of people were watching. He didn’t think this would cause a problem? Come on now.

  16. mmaguru on October 13th, 2010 6:15 AM

    Sorry Brian,
    I just don’t agree with your passion on this issue. It’s a T.V. show, it’s not a life or death situation and it had no impact on the show whether it was from viewer numbers or the economics. You can even question how real the reality is to begin with. I apologize for using the word “accident” lightly. I meant he didn’t mean for it to create an issue with Sherdog and the UFC. Josh didn’t originally want to reveal the names but Alvarez made light of situation and convinced Josh to do so. Josh told the viewers to turn the radio down for 30 seconds if they didn’t want to hear the finalists.

    In any case, I don’t think Josh would have done it if he realized the repercussions. is the #1 source for MMA news for quite a while now and it will remain that way with or without credentials. Just because they don’t agree with ridiculous statements that MMA will be the “largest” sport in the world in T minus 10 years doesn’t mean they are against the UFC. They are just reporting reality.


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