Strikeforce: "We Did Pay Ring Girl Nicole Craner, Her Claims Are False"

Mitchell CiccarelliAnalyst IDecember 23, 2010

Earlier this week, I published an article with quotes from a former Strikeforce ring girl, Nicole Craner, suggesting that Strikeforce did not compensate her for her efforts.

Through speaking with Craner on my radio show, TUF Crap Radio, she told me that Strikeforce didn’t pay her during her time as a ring girl for the company. I took her quotes and published it in article format just a few days following the radio segment.

However, I made a huge journalistic mistake in neglecting to reach out directly to Strikeforce to confirm if Craner’s statements were indeed true.  I would like to publicly apologize to Strikeforce for publishing the piece without doing just that.

There are two sides to every story and, according to Strikeforce, the story I originally reported is not true.  

I have spoken with Mike Afromowitz from Strikeforce who claims that Craner was paid for her time as a ring girl with the California-based MMA organization. Bleacher Report has since deleted the previous article that I published.

“[Nicole Craner’s] story and statements are completely inaccurate. I’ve been working with Scott Coker for 10 years, I’ve been here a long time and I know how the company operates,” Afromowitz told Bleacher Report on Thursday.  

“We are the last to do anything like that and, you know, a ring girl position is one component of production. It’s a small fee, so to say that we would short change or not pay a ring girl is insane. The story doesn’t add up and our parent company has records of paying her for her services as well as reimbursing her for traveling expenses."

“Strikeforce has been in business since 1994 and our long-term success as a promotion is, in large part, due to the upstanding manner in which we conduct our business with our partners, vendors, and employees.”

Mr. Afromowitz continued to explain Strikeforce’s position.

“The facts are that Strikeforce paid this woman for her services and reimbursed her for travel expenses she incurred,” he said.  “Our parent company, Explosion Entertainment, has record of the payments it made to Nicole and can, therefore, validate the information I am providing you with.”

Furthermore, I would like to once again apologize to Strikeforce for any and all trouble I may have caused in my initial story.