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The UFC Going For Strikeforce's Jugular In Nashville, Tennessee

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That's what appears to be happening on April 17thas Strikeforce and the UFC appear to be going head to head in Nashville, Tennessee. Strikeforce is tentatively scheduled(they could move it to the 24th) to hold their event at the Bridgestone Arena, while the UFC is in talks with Vanderbilt University. Think about it, the two largest MMA promotions holding a LIVE event in the SAME city on the SAME day? Nashville MMA fans are lucky!

Dave Meltzer point outs out that this could be the last hurrah for Strikeforce on CBS:

MMA is at best marginal programming on CBS. The last Strikeforce show drew 39 percent lower ratings than CBS usually does in the same time slot, but it still has value to the network because it skews far younger and more male-oriented than usual Saturday night fare. It gives the network an outlet to attract sponsors who aim at the hard-to-reach male 18-34 demographic.

The April 17 show is a test, because if it does well without proven draws Emelianenko, Slice or Gina Carano, it's a major feather in the cap of Strikeforce going forward on the network. That is probably why UFC is looking at countering.

Granted, I don't know what the expectations are for Strikeforce ratings wise, but one would assume CBS would want them to at least equal or best their last effort from the Emelianenko/Rogers event. If not, I doubt that CBS would be willing to give Strikeforce another shot on it's network. In other words, every single viewer is critical for Strikeforce if they go with their scheduled show on the 17th. The Strikeforce event on paper looks very good with three scheduled title fights, but none of the featured fighters are proven draws ratings wise. So I don't expect big numbers from this event regardless of if the UFC event comes to fruition.

On that note, if they UFC event does come to fruition, I think it'll definitely impact Strikeforce ratings wise. In fact, if they put Kimbo Slice on this event(it's being rumored), it's possible that the UFC ratings on Spike could surpass whatever ratings Strikeforce is able to achieve on CBS. If that were to happen, I doubt we'd see Strikeforce on CBS again. The CBS deal is kind of the feather in the cap right now for Strikeforce and without that then what are they? Are they back to being the regional promotion? Will their 'alliance' with DREAM help them stay afloat? The CBS deal is basically what allows Strikeforce to claim the #2 spot in regards to MMA promotions.

Is the ultimate goal of the UFC to get CBS to sever ties with Strikeforce? Probably. Without CBS Dana White could rant and say I told you Strikeforce was just a little regional promotion that didn't know what they were doing. So if the UFC event comes to fruition on the 17th, and Strikeforce doesn't move their show, it appears that the UFC would be going for the jugular in this one. What say you?