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View Full Version : Zuffa Should Consider Sending BJ Penn to Strikeforce to Face Gilbert Melendez


VCURamFan
12-19-2011, 09:45 PM
From MMAFighting.com:

If Dana White won't bring Gilbert Melendez (http://www.mmafighting.com/fighter/gilbert/melendez/778/) to the UFC (http://www.mmafighting.com/ufc), he should bring the UFC (http://www.mmafighting.com/ufc) to Melendez. Or at least, someone for him to fight. After beating Jorge Masvidal (http://www.mmafighting.com/fighter/jorge/masvidal/1272/) at last night's Strikeforce (http://www.mmafighting.com/strikeforce/) event in San Diego, what more is there for him to do? Who else is there for him to beat? What matchup are fans clamoring to see? The answers are nothing, no one and none.

Melendez is a top five fighter with nothing left to prove in the division as it stands right now. He's beaten Masvidal, Shinya Aoki (http://www.mmafighting.com/fighter/shinya/aoki/676/) and Josh Thomson (http://www.mmafighting.com/fighter/josh/thomson/356/), three of the best lightweights outside of the UFC (http://www.mmafighting.com/ufc), but there's no signed fighter in the division who has truly earned the right to face one of the best. Sure there are fighters like KJ Noons (http://www.mmafighting.com/fighter/kj/noons/1493/) and Gesias "JZ" Cavalcante with some name value, but both of those guys have won exactly one fight in a row.

Solution: Bring someone over from the UFC (http://www.mmafighting.com/ufc) to fight him. It doesn't have to be the champion. Bring one of the many quality guys over to challenge him. I have just the guy. He's a big name, he can bring attention to the promotion, and he offers the instant credibility that only a former UFC champion can provide. Bring over BJ Penn (http://www.mmafighting.com/fighter/bj/penn/361/) to fight Melendez.

Right now, Penn is on a break from fighting. He's home in Hilo, Hawaii spending time with his family after his hard-fought loss to Nick Diaz (http://www.mmafighting.com/fighter/nick/diaz/506/) in October. But Penn does plan to fight again, and he even said that he'd be willing to rematch Diaz.

That's not going to happen, as Diaz has moved on to preparing for a big interim UFC welterweight title fight with Carlos Condit (http://www.mmafighting.com/fighter/carlos/condit/663/). So we need to find something that excites Penn, something that motivates him. Regardless of the skeptics who still refuse to believe that Melendez is for real, Penn knows the truth, that Melendez is for real and has a set of skills that would provide a challenge. Because of that, a bout with Melendez might interest him. As an added bonus, Melendez comes from the same Team Cesar Gracie (http://www.mmafighting.com/fighter/cesar/gracie/1213/) as Diaz, making the marketing of the fight simple. BJ Penn (http://www.mmafighting.com/fighter/bj/penn/361/) comes looking for revenge against Diaz's teammate.

Penn loves fighting for belts, and as long as Frankie Edgar (http://www.mmafighting.com/fighter/frank/edgar/451/) is the lightweight champ, Penn is stuck. He isn't going to get another shot against Edgar after losing to him twice. The same holds true for his chances of getting a welterweight title fight. He's already lost to Georges St-Pierre (http://www.mmafighting.com/fighter/georges/st-pierre/439/) twice and Diaz once, so his chances of earning his way back for another title bout anytime soon are slim. So where does that leave him? He's in a legend-at-large role, looking for interesting matchups wherever they might appear. And is there really anything in the UFC that is so much more interesting than Penn-Melendez?

Let's face it, Penn would be one of the biggest stars ever to fight in the Strikeforce (http://www.mmafighting.com/strikeforce/) hexagon, with only Dan Henderson (http://www.mmafighting.com/fighter/dan/henderson/129/) and Fedor Emelianenko (http://www.mmafighting.com/fighter/fedor/emelianenko/705/) able to rival his popularity. He's a former two-division champ in the UFC, every MMA (http://www.mmafighting.com/) fan knows him, and his presence would certainly bring attention to the promotion. Just as importantly, it would illustrate that Zuffa is serious about Strikeforce (http://www.mmafighting.com/strikeforce/).

Just last week, White promised that Strikeforce (http://www.mmafighting.com/strikeforce/) wouldn't be a B-league, or a feeder system for the UFC. They would go after top talent, he said. They would find a way to make Strikeforce's best fighters happy, he said. That would mean leaving Melendez where he is, and bringing talent to him. This match would prove that White meant what he said.

The biggest hurdle in this plan would be making it worth Penn's while. Because Strikeforce is on Showtime and not pay-per-view, the pay scale is different, and White would have to dig into his his pocket to make him whole.

That investment would be worth it for Zuffa, to show that they are truly committed to Strikeforce as its own promotion. It's one thing for White to say it on a conference call, it's another entirely for him to send over a UFC legend. That's a statement. That's a promise kept.

BJ Penn would be just the fighter to satisfy White's promise, fan interest and Melendez's ambitions. Melendez doesn't just need a legitimate challenge, he deserves one.

Miss Foxy
12-19-2011, 10:11 PM
Absolutely not. I would flip my lid if that happened :biting:... Bj needs some time for himself and family right now..

JavierDLC
12-19-2011, 10:30 PM
This would be a good Fight, but i think Gilbert would destroy BJ at this point.

matthughesfan21
12-20-2011, 02:47 AM
No, just bring Gil to the UFC...There is not enough talent there for him anyways...I'd like to see Strikeforce be used as sort of a minor leagues of the UFC. Let young fighters build there get them ready for the UFC(or guys struggling to go there and get some confidence back). I want to see the best fighters all be able to fight each other. There is nothing wrong with having all the best guys in the UFC(every other major sport is the same way) but use the organizations such as strikeforce as a feeder league(they still play a key role to the progression of the sport and the athletes) and can still be successful financially.

Keep the woman's MMA there too, at least until the talent is deep enough to be competitive because as it stands now, there are a few woman that are great, and the rest are C level

Vizion
12-20-2011, 04:34 AM
I think BJ should just be retired.

He doesn't want to fight anymore. Like Foxy said, he should just be a dad. That's more important than fighting.

VCURamFan
12-20-2011, 12:55 PM
OK< well how about this instead: send Kenny Florian over there. He's fought in 4 different UFC weight classes & lost 3 separate title shots here. My Strikeforce is his last shot at gold.

rearnakedchoke
12-20-2011, 03:39 PM
i think melendez would get beat by edgar, maynard ... bj is at a different stage in his career .. he aged real fast and can't keep up with these kids anymore ... i think him going to SF would tarnish his rep of always fighting the best ...

rearnakedchoke
12-20-2011, 03:40 PM
OK< well how about this instead: send Kenny Florian over there. He's fought in 4 different UFC weight classes & lost 3 separate title shots here. My Strikeforce is his last shot at gold.

thats much more plausible .. i think it would be a good fight ... at least he could have some glory of holding a belt albeit in a less prestigious league ..

County Mike
12-20-2011, 04:04 PM
Except that Zuffa really doesn't care about Strikeforce. It will be dismantled just like Pride and WEC. All that "Strikeforce will be seeking top talent" is BS talk.

rearnakedchoke
12-20-2011, 05:32 PM
Except that Zuffa really doesn't care about Strikeforce. It will be dismantled just like Pride and WEC. All that "Strikeforce will be seeking top talent" is BS talk.

i actually think they will keep sf around .. if they can make money, they can use it to develop talent (someone else said this, use it as a farm system) ... they can also use it to counter program bellator who is moving to friday nite fights, so it won't be long until they do that me thinks ...

VCURamFan
12-20-2011, 07:13 PM
i actually think they will keep sf around .. if they can make money, they can use it to develop talent (someone else said this, use it as a farm system) ... they can also use it to counter program bellator who is moving to friday nite fights, so it won't be long until they do that me thinks ...
Bellator will already be countered by Live TUF on FX (they're switching nights, too). The problem with SF as a feeder is that the average fan won't want to tune into the Lil brother show (how'd the CFL's TV coverage?), so they have to try & prop it up with talent at the top to at least give the appearance of comparability. Moving a highly recognizable, but no longer title-worthy, name like Florian would do just that. If he wins, it lends credibility to SF because they can point to how he's mixed it up with the top names. If he loses, it lends even more credibility to SF because this star from the UFC got tooled by their champ.

wavetar
12-21-2011, 01:25 AM
I like it...great idea & makes great sense for either Penn or Florian at this point.

bj44
12-21-2011, 06:27 AM
gilbert vs guida 2 would be fun

Max
12-23-2011, 09:47 PM
Why not just combine the rosters but make Strikeforce the name of the Events that are run on Showtime. The UFC has 8 weight classes, if you add the womens titles thats different weight classes between 2 promotions. The womens betls can be defended on showtime until they build popularity and then they can use Strikeforce to build fighters up or even a title fight every now and then. They would just have to change the Strikeforce cage to be the same as the UFC's and everything would run smoothly.