4 Ways Dana White Can Improve Strikeforce
Dana White seems to think of Strikeforce as an afterthought. If he didn't then the Strikeforce event wouldn't appear only a day after the the second UFC card on FX. The lack of media that has been afforded to the card is a travesty.
Even with the important matchup between Miesha Tate and Ronda Rousey being the main event, the UFC card is being promoted above it.
White may not be serious about Strikeforce, but with a few changes he could turn it into something that fans would enjoy and could help grow the sport of MMA.
It might differ from what it is now, though that wouldn't be a bad thing considering its current second class status.
Focus on Women's MMA
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Give the fans a product that they can't see anywhere else and you will draw a better audience.
Maybe Strikeforce doesn't have the best talent overall, but they could be the organization that helps grow women's MMA. That part of the sport seems to have a viable market that could thrive if given a top spot for potential participants.
If female wrestlers and martial artists see that there is a place to make money and even a way to launch other careers, as in the case of Gina Carano who is acting in movies, then the sport can see some growth.
White just has to make the initial investment and help nurture it.
Get Rid of the Championship Belts for the Male Divisions
picture courtesy of wikipedia.org
It may sound like a terrible idea, but getting rid of the belts is the best thing for the company at this point. The UFC has stolen most of the champions anyway so the belts are worthless.
After all, if a champion isn't going to be the best in the world or is just going to be poached by the promotion's larger partner then they shouldn't exist.
Instead White should just have the top person in the division win a few fights and if he succeeds, be offered a contract in the UFC. It would be honest about what Strikeforce is and have plenty of talented fighters try to get into the promotion.
In a way it would be a tournament version of the Ultimate Fighter, but stretched over a longer period of time and with the stars built up more.
Give the Fighters More Freedom on Their Entrances
Who wouldn't watch this?
There is a lot of crossover between pro wrestling and MMA. Even if fans don't want to admit it there are many ways in which a UFC event mimics things from the WWE.
The fact that every fight on the main card has a meaning and usually is between to well-promoted fighters.
The fact that each match has a certain feel to it.
Even the very promos made on the build up shows and how the fighters are presented is because of marketing.
For some reason the UFC doesn't allow their fighters to have over the top entrances in the UFC which is fine because of how large the promotion already is. Strikeforce could use the help though and a little flash and excitement couldn't hurt the product.
Take the Promotion off of Showtime
It isn't a coincidence that boxing is on premium cable and also a niche sport. The more you limit your audience the harder it is to foster growth of those that enjoy the sport.
Showtime is never going to help Strikeforce grow past a certain spot and the MMA promotion will always keep its status as being small.
White has several options. He could put Strikeforce on Versus which at one point had UFC programming. He could decide to place it on another network entirely, but the brand needs to grow or it will diminish.
And sooner or later it won't be worth keeping it around at all.