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Zuffa, Parent Company of UFC Purchases Strikeforce, Monopolizes MMA

We here at LiverKick.com pride ourselves on our kickboxing coverage, but from time to time find it important to discuss the MMA world as well. There is a lot of crossover between the two worlds, and at times, they go hand in hand. Strikeforce has a storied past, as does its promoter, Scott Coker. Coker had worked the kickboxing market in the West coast for years before working for K-1 to bring their USA shows to fans. His baby, Strikeforce, was a kickboxing promotion before it was a MMA promotion. It was local talent like Cung Le and Frank Shamrock working with Coker to put on MMA shows that got the ball rolling and Strikeforce became the best regional promotion in the country. It didn't take much, just using big names on the main event slots with local big names to fill out the rest of the card and young, local up and comers on the undercard.

It worked, and soon Strikeforce was in a position to purchase EliteXC's poison assets. Or so we thought. We all assumed anything affiliated with EliteXC was awful and doomed, but Coker and Co. showed that with a better business plan and some patience, you can make anything work. Today something happened, something big. Ariel Helwani posted a video of Dana White discussing Zuffa's purchase of Strikeforce. I had to look twice at the date and make sure it wasn't April 1st, because sometimes time just moves quickly. It isn't, it is March 12, 2011. Remember that date.

People on Twitter immediately freaked out; co-promotion? Will Strikeforce immediately die? Does this mean Fedor, Barnett, Overeem, Diaz, Daley, etc. in the UFC? Watch the video and you get a feel for what is happening. Dana White claims over and over again, "business as usual." This means that as long as Strikeforce has their television deals; CBS and Showtime, it is its own entity. There will be no co-promotion, and fighters stay where they are, of course, unless they decide differently. Scott Coker and his crew are still in control of Strikeforce for the time being. If you are a Strikeforce fighter, you are one until Strikeforce is gone or your contract is up. Same goes for UFC.

If you know how Zuffa works and remember their history with acquisitions, you should understand where the concern comes from. I've heard many herald this move as a great move for the sport and one step closer to the holy grail in fighting; a fighters union. I appreciate and applaud the enthusiasm, but Zuffa is not acting like a sport league as much as it is a corporation, a business.

I worked in the PR world with some of the heavy hitters of modern industry for four years, with some of the biggest companies in the world; AT&T, Apple, Microsoft, Motorola and Boeing to name a few. Before someone calls my BS on this, there were people in each company I was on a first name basis with and spoke to daily for years. I'm simply painting a picture here for people to illustrate a point that I've worked with huge corporations in a public relations and investor relations setting and know how the big dogs do business.

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Danyo Ilunga Talks About His It's Showtime Title Win

If you were one of the lucky people who tuned in to It's Showtime last weekend, you saw relative newcomer to the international scene, Danyo Ilunga make an absolute fool of seasoned pro Wendell Roche in a title fight for the It's Showtime 95kg Championship. Many had seen this fight as a possible lopsided affair with Roche finishing off the much younger Ilunga with his heavy hands. Instead, we saw the young Remy Bonjasky protege move and strike much like his mentor.

Ilunga showed great footwork, head movement and his defense was Bonjasky-esque. This means that he spent a lot of time backing up, but picked and chose his shots and was making a ton of clean connections on a frustrated opponent who was connecting with next to nothing. It was a 5 round dissection and showed a lot of people that Ilunga is absolutely for real.

The interview that follows will absolutely endear you to Danyo Ilunga, as you see that he comes from humble beginnings. Not only does he discuss his top notch strategy that he followed to a tee, but how nervous he got entering into a big time promotion like It's Showtime, how he was overwhelmed by how professional everyone was, the production and being surrounded with such big names in the kickboxing world. Like it or not, he has to accept that he is among them now. If you haven't seen the fight yet, check it out here.

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Oktagon Fight Code Tomorrow: Giorgio Petrosyan vs. Cosmo Alexandre

OktagonWhen it rains it pours, and in this case, it is a good rain, the kind that comes after a drought. After being denied top level kickboxing for what feels like an eternity, with flashes of hope here and there, March has proven to be an incredible month for fans. We kicked things off with It's Showtime's Sporthallen Zuid Amsterdam show, which featured a top-to-bottom card of fantastic fights and march into this weekend where legitimate pound-for-pound in combat sports contender Giorgio Petrosyan will go to war with former It's Showtime 77MAX Champion Cosmo Alexandre. Cosmo was stripped of his It's Showtime title last year after booking another fight too close to his It's Showtime title defense, angering It's Showtime management into stripping him of his title for not adhering to his contract.

The irony, of course, is that this weekend he will be fighting Giorgio Petrosyan, who is an It's Showtime/Black Label fighter. It is a tall order for Alexandre, as he goes into the fight staring down the barrel of a shotgun almost; facing off against the two-time K-1 World MAX Champion. To say that at this point in time facing Giorgio Petrosyan is a tall order is to underestimate Petrosyan. Petrosyan comes into the fight this weekend with a staggering record of 67 wins, one loss and two draws. Oh, and he is only 25. He comes into this fight with a win over Sudsakorn Sor. Klinmee, a very real challenge at the time for Petrosyan, and was handled quite easily.

Speaking of Susakorn, he is also in action tomorrow as he'll square off with the Chinese kickboxer Xu Yan. Xu Yan is probably best known for his knockout of Yuichiro "Jienotsu" Nagashima in 2009, as well as his bout with Buakaw Por. Pramuk from last year. Needless to say, Xu Yan is a worthy competitor and the fight with Sudsakorn should be a great one.

On top of that, Giorgio Petrosyan's brother, Aremen Petrosyan will be in action against Japanese kickboxer Yoshihiro Sato. Sato is one of the few Japanese kickboxers that has ventured outside of Japan on a semi-regular basis looking to hone his skills. I truly commend Sato for this, as it is a step in the right direction. From the looks of Yoshihiro Sato's twitter account, he is safe in Italy and ready to fight, although I'm sure the pounding Japan took from yesterday's Earthquake and Tsunamis will be on his mind.

So what is the best part of all of this? Oh, how about that it will be streamed live on the internet for free. You can head on over to here, tomorrow at 3:45 pm Eastern time and catch the event as it unfolds.

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Ultimate Glory is Coming - Bloodstain Lane Has a Message For You

There are some people that for some reason, really dislike Bloodstain Lane, find him abrasive, crass, over-the-top and antagonizing. The truth is, he embodies all of those things with a pure, raw passion for MMA and kickboxing that I find refreshing. I feel like I'm on the same page as him a lot of the time, I just tend to choose my wording a bit differently when expressing my disdain. It works for Lane, though, as he has mentioned a few times in more candid moments, it is a character that takes parts of himself and just amplifies them. As a person who has performed on stage, I can respect and understand that, as well as understand that not everyone gets it.

The point I'm getting at here is, BSL has done a lot to promote some of the world's best fighting, and Ultimate Glory's next show is rapidly approaching. There is a very good chance that you'll be able to watch that event from the comfort of your computer or TV. So watch as BSL hooked up with Team Golden Glory's Martijn de Jong at the last Strikeforce show and gave a message about the show. Make sure to catch the show, March 19th.

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