As the dust begins to settle on last night’s Strikeforce: Tate Vs Rousey event we take a look ahead to what’s likely to come next for the evening’s big winners.
The ideal fight for Rousey now would be against Cris ‘Cyborg’ Santos at either 135lbs or 145lbs, but unfortunately the Brazilian is serving a year’s suspension so that potential classic will have to wait for the time being.
Luckily there is a ready-made No.1 contender at bantamweight for Rousey in the shape of ex-champion Sarah Kaufman who emerged victorious from a bloody and enjoyable preliminary battle with Alexis Davis.
Like Rousey, Kaufman also holds a win over Miesha Tate and will provide a suitable test for Rousey at some stage later in the year.
Thomson picked up the ‘W’ against KJ Noons, but this was the flattest performance we’ve seen for ‘The Punk’ in quite some time.
A trilogy title fight with Gilbert Melendez could now be on the cards, but honestly, after that display I wouldn’t rule out the possibility that Strikeforce will look elsewhere for the champion’s next defense, such as Pat Healy who had looked good elsewhere on the card.
If the title shot is ruled out then a fight with former No.1 contender Jorge Masvidal might bring about an improved performance from Thomson.
A good performance for Misaki in his Strikeforce debut over a recognised fighter in Paul Daley immediately puts him in a favorable position in their 170lb division.
Daley had been the obvious choice to go up against Tyron Woodley in a fight to claim Nick Diaz vacated belt so, given the lack of available options, Misaki may now take his place at a title contender.
If not then Misaki Vs former Strikeforce Challengers product Roger Bowling who also had his hand raised last night would be the best option for him.
Sayers made short work of Scott Smith to make his mark on Strikeforce’s middleweight division in his first big event appearance.
Ideally you’d want to continue to bring Sayers along slowly, but there’s such a dearth of talent in Strikeforce’s divisions that this is easier said than done. Therefore he might have to take another step up in competition and face Robbie Lawler next.
‘Jacare’ picked up a comfortable win over a short-notice opponent last night which doesn’t do a whole lot for him in terms of getting back to another title shot.
The problem now is that Souza has already fought most of the big-name contenders at 185lbs. The only one left would be recent title challengers Keith Jardine. If that’s out of the question then he may have to make do with the man who was originally supposed to be his opponent last night, Derek Brunson who’s three fights unbeaten in Strikeforce.