Strikeforce: Which Fighter Has the Most to Lose This Weekend?

Matthew HemphillCorrespondent IIMarch 2, 2012

picture courtesy of
picture courtesy of

Scott Smith is dangerously close to slipping off the radar of high-level MMA and dissolving into obscurity. That means less opportunities at getting back to the top, and less paydays.

He is facing three losses in a row and is facing an unknown opponent in Lumumba Sayers, whose record is 5-2, and is getting the fight because of a win over Antwain Britt. He isn't well known in the company and the only reason that this bout is making it to the main card is because of Smith's notoriety.

While Smith should win because of his experience and knowledge, that comes from the prior level of opposition he has faced, and could lead to a loss.

If he does, he may just have to say goodbye to his time as a top MMA fighter.

Smith is 32 years old, and if he loses to Sayers it will be his second loss to a prospect in his last two fights. He will have gone from former contender to measuring stick, and while Strikeforce's roster might be lacking, it will be hard to make the case that he should be a part of it.

Some fighters like Keith Jardine have made it onto Strikeforce with four losses, but he had won two fights since that time. The UFC had also put a lot of marketing into Jardine as he had beaten Chuck Liddell at one point.

Smith's greatest claims to fame are being on The Ultimate Fighter, fighting Robbie Lawler for the EliteXC title and a penchant for making fights exciting. It is the last reason that has kept him with the company and on the main card.

As the losses rack up, the memories of what he was disappear along with the perceived notion of what he brought to the company. The fourth loss might make officials of the company forget them entirely.

If he loses to Sayers, Strikeforce may just have to let him go and this late in the game, there is very little that Smith could do to come back.

So Smith better walk into the cage not just to fight, but to do everything he can to win as well.

Because a fourth strike and he is out.