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The winner of the Strikeforce Heavweight World Grand Prix will have one more fight in Strikeforce. Who are the realistically possible opponents for that fight, and who would you like to see them face later this year?
RICH HANSEN, MMATORCH COLUMNIST
True story from a previous life as an orthopedic surgeon.
So, one day a guy walks in to my posh office with his hand way in the air, and tells me that for 20 years he's been unable to lower his arm. It's been a horrible inconvenience. He's had surgeries, therapy, hypnosis, even acupuncture, and he's so desperate that he's considering amputation. So, I took this poor chap into a room full of MMA fans and asked the following question:
If you think Josh Barnett or Daniel Cormier are going to actually have a fight in Strikeforce after they fight each other on May 19, raise your hand. I looked around, not one hand in the air. And after about five seconds I heard a lone voice wail, "THANK YOU! I'M CURED!"
Like I said, true story. Absolutely no use of poetic license. None. What. So. Ev. AH.
BRAD WALKER, MMATORCH COLUMNIST
I would like to see them face each other first, it feels like this grand prix has been moving in slow motion for an eternity. Who is out there that provides a realistic challenge to either of them? Fedor? Unlikely - but stranger things have happend. Couture is retired, Cro Cop is dead in the water, so unless they bring in a UFC heavyweight there is really slim pickings. I would like to see the winner fight someone who actually poses a threat, and the best answer I can think up is a returning Shane Carwin.
ANWAR PEREZ, MMATORCH COLUMNIST
Honestly, there are other heavyweights in Strikeforce? I did not know that. I have no idea who they would face, I would rather them be put in the UFC, but what'll happen more than likely is that a UFC heavyweight will be brought in to face the tournament winner. Maybe a Matt Mitrione or Roy Nelson.
ERIC HOBAUGH, MMATORCH CONTRIBUTOR
I think the most interesting fight out there for the winner of the Strikeforce Heavyweight World Grand Prix would be a fight with Shane Carwin. This would be a big fight for Strikeforce and a good test for each fighter. We would find out right away where Carwin is in his comeback. Another good fight would be against Fabricio Werdum. He is a legitimate top five fighter and I have not heard who his next opponent will be. Either of these two fights would be great.
ALEX WILLIAMS, MMATORCH CONTRIBUTOR
I don't even know who's left in the Strikeforce heavyweight division aside from Josh Barnett and Daniel Cormier. Maybe sign Tim Sylvia to a single fight contract? Todd Duffee if the Super Fight League folds by then? There aren't any good options.
DAN MOORE, MMATORCH UK CONTRIBUTOR
I couldn't care less about who they should fight next in Strikeforce. I can guarantee that I won't be tuning in to watch, as that would mean paying hard cash for viewing privileges here in the UK. Both fighters though, should be instantly catapulted into the UFC after this weekend rather than mess about with another pointless fight in a pointless organization. Their respective opponents for future fights will probably be determined by the outcome of the heavyweight fights at UFC 146 later this month.
If I were to play virtual matchmaker, i'd pit the loser against the winner of Roy Nelson and Dave Herman, and i'd throw the winner into a fight with Frank Mir after he loses to Junior dos Santos. That would provide firm evidence of their future credibility in amongst the big boys whilst Cain Velaquez is busy being the next contender for JDS.
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