The UFC today held a conference call with the media earlier today to discuss the details of their purchase of Strikeforce.
One of the most interesting details revealed by UFC Chairman and CEO Lorenzo Fertitta during this was the fact that Strikeforce’s current television deal with Showtime actually goes on until 2014, not 2012 as Dana White had first stated at the weekend.
That’s very significant as many have speculated that the UFC will not look to fold Strikeforce into the UFC until that deal expires. Four years is a long time to wait though, so it’s now somewhat questionable whether that will still be the case.
Dana White did admit that, “Anything’s possible, I would never say never to anything in the future.”
When the news first broke on Saturday when Dana White spoke to Ariel Helwani, White had also stated that ‘Superfights’ between the two promotions would not be happening, but now, just a couple of days on, it seems that he’s now leaving the door open for that possibility.
“I wouldn’t count anything out, including superfights,” White revealed, while Fertitta gave a stronger indication that such fights could take place by adding, “If there’s an interest, that’s what we do.”
Unquestionably the interest is going to be their – fans are already drooling in anticipation of fights like Cain Velasquez Vs Alistair Overeem, GSP Vs Nick Diaz and Fedor Emelianenko Vs Randy Couture to name but a few, and there’s no doubt that Dana white and Co. are going to be bombarded with questions about this until they finally give in and put on the fights people want to see.
Another interesting note gleamed from today’s media event is that Strikeforce will now join the unified MMA rules, meaning that like in the UFC, the promotion’s fighters will now be allowed to use elbows on the ground.
Other things will stay the same however. The fight announcers will continue as they are for instance, and the used by Strikeforce will not become an Octagon, instead remaining in it’s current hexagonal form.
Dana white reveals that due to Strikeforce’s current deal with Showtime, some of these decisions are out of their hands.
“To make it real clear, Showtime controls the production, which includes the announcers; it includes how the show is broadcast – all those different things,” Fertitta revealed. “I’m sure that we’ll give our input, and whether or not they take our input is entirely up to them.”