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Strikeforce changes policy regarding elbows on the ground

Though fans had been assured Strikeforce would operate as it had prior to Zuffa’s recent acquisition of the promotion it appears immediate consistency only relates to contractual matters as revealed in a recent conference call with UFC brass.

One such example relates to the allowance elbows on the ground as is the case under the unified system of rules used in the Octagon. Prior to this past weekend’s surprise purchase Strikeforce had banned them based on their propensity for cutting rather than KOing.

News of the change was generally met with approval by the MMA community including Strikeforce middleweight Tim Kennedy who wrote on his Twitter page, “It sounds like we will be allowed to use elbows on the ground in Strikeforce from now on,” while also adding the emphasis of an “evil smile” at the end.

Other points discussed in the call were the possibility of PPV for the Strikeforce World Grand Prix Final and some specifics regarding the company’s deal with Showtime. According to Lorenzo Fertitta, Strikeforce is obligated to produce sixteen more shows for the premium cable network with the expectation it will expire in 2014. However, he left the door open for additional years saying Zuffa was open to discussing an extension if the feeling was mutual.


  • Good now if we could just get soccer kicks and knees on the ground to be allowed in the states it would be awesome….I understand no stomps, its hard to still call it a sport when you’re stomping on someone’s head.

  • Rece Rock says:


    Hopefully we get some Buffer 360 action in the SF cage as well.

  • I’d deal with Joe Martinez or that other guy they have currently if they could just promise me they’d get rid of Mauro and Shamrock…

    this would be a great place for whatshisface from wec and either KenFlo or preferably Frank Mir….i Really liked Mir’s commentary…or even lil Evil. anyone but Bonnar.

  • Rece Rock says:

    Yes overly excited Mauro and Brace Face Shanmrock need to go… Frank is helping make strides here in NY with MMA legalization so I don’t want to pic on him but I honestly can not look at him more than 5 secs with out wondering how many years his braces have been on and how many times is he going to relate everything back to him or his career some how some way… it’s all about frank or he don’t wanna talk about it

  • sides666 says:

    Great news. Simply great! Finally i can watch without dismay for all the elbows that should have been thrown. I never understood pride rules you can stomp on someones head but you cant elbow because thats just savage

  • sides666 says:

    Is there anyone one out there who actually likes stikeforce commentators i hate them with a passion most of all shamrock he is a joke. Longest case of braces in mma history. bring on ken flo and mir or ever bonnar

  • Angry Mike says:

    This will be a game changer, especially in the Aoki v. Beerbohm fight. Aoki’s ground game may not be as lethal if he has to eat or avoid elbows while fighting from his back, and Beerbohm’s gnp is pretty good. I wonder if Aoki will show up or back out of the fight for some reason or another.

  • Dufresne says:

    I like it. While elbows on the ground do cause more cuts than just about any other strike, banning them really hampered a fighter in top position in guard. When you don’t have to worry about the guy on top looping an elbow into your face, wrist control becomes significantly easier and more effective. If you can get even moderate control of a fighter’s wrist you’ll not only dramatically lessen his punching power and accuracy, you can also keep him from reaching down to push off your leg in an attempt to either break your closed guard or to pass.

    And I know I’m probably in the minority here, but I don’t want them to legalize soccer kicks and knees to the head of a grounded opponent. When a fighter is on the ground their head has a very limited range of motion, and that can cause a huge magnification of the forces the fighter’s brain receives. Fight Science on the National Geographic channel tested Randy Couture’s standing punch at around five hundred pounds of force, but when they tested his punching power on the same mannequin while it was laying on the ground he rang in at two thousand pounds. That’s a 400% increase. When you throw in the fact that the leg is naturally over three times as powerful as the arm and you’re getting into force loads that are high enough to not only end fights, but possibly careers or even lives.

  • MCM says:

    Totally agree on both points Duf. Check out when Fight Science tested the knee from the clinch. It’s the most powerful leg strike someone can throw.

    Angry Mike, I think Aoki is already thinking of pulling out due to the natural disasters in Japan. Masvidal and Noons are on tap for Aoki a Kawajiri.

  • bigbadjohn says:

    I’d take Bonnar,. Florian or Rashad before I’d have Mir back. I really never cared for his commentating style (much like his personality, or at least the way he conveys himself). Question of the day for me is: why all the hate for Mauro? His voice is engraveed in my mind from the glory days of Pride and I’ve never noticed him take shots at fighters, get too bias, or even mislabel a technique observed.

  • sides666 says:

    I hate mauro ranallo because his voice is extremely annoying and i question his choice of words on many occaisions. When he is sitting next to bas rutten its not as bad but solo i hate the guy add shamrock to the situation and i find myself thanking the gods of tv for the mute option

  • THEGUNNER says:

    I vote for bas rutten as an announcer he was good in pride and he doesnt seem to take sides like frank. Ever since cung le kicked the shit out of him all he does is hate.

  • elkymbo says:

    Bas Rutten rules and agreed Ranallo’s voice is bloody annoying. And does anyone remember him self christening Dan Henderson’s right hand the “Hendo Bomb”? I could hear Pat Miletich’s eyes rolling without even seeing them. Whatta maroon!

  • Frankmur says:

    I would love to hear Rogan call a fight with Michael Schiavello! “He’s taken more shots to the face than Tera Patrick” They were really funny together on Rogans podcast.

  • Frankmur says:

    and I also can not stand Mauro Ranallo and would not miss Gus Johnson

  • MMA-LOGIC says:

    Fight science has as much to do with real science as Man vs wild has to do with real survival.
    I don’t want stomps or soccer kicks but I want knees to the “grounded” opponent.
    I don’t know about Randy but most damaging blows in MMA come on the feet and most of the blows on the ground are less powerful because of biomechanics. I have hardly ever (never) seen a guy knees downwards so that the mat stops your head from moving. Besides on the feet you can normally generate a more powerful blow, Randy is a freak but I still have not seen him KO a guy on the ground so … I think it should be the case where you can not jump and knee a grounded opponent or knee in a falling motion, so as to drop onto the grounded man but knees on the ground are needed to prevent the exploitation of rules and to allow a more balanced sport which is fast becoming a retirement home for wrestlers.
    Elbows on the ground are a catch 22. I wouldn’t ban them but the banning of them does make the top fighter posture up to deliver punches instead of remaining tight, in control and SAFE. The wrist control is made easier without elbows but more submissions and less lay and pray is also a result. The ground fight is more dynamic and the top fighter is made to work harder. Wrestlers everywhere are ecstatic with this rule change because it makes there job easier, and we all want more wrestling and control based MMA. It is too easy for wrestlers to transition to MMA, all they have to do is take you down and hold you there with a few elbows in tight and they win, make them learn MMA and not learn how to stop it.
    There is the cut thing too, actually I would ban elbows on the ground but allow knees to the grounded opponent (not downward or 12 to 6 knees).

  • MMA-LOGIC says:

    To be honest a lot of rules need to be changed in MMA and I think eventually they will be changed. The unified rules of MMA are the first go at setting rules for MMA and as we all know, rules change and it is usually because of fighters exploiting those rules that inspires the change. In the next 100 years of MMA the sport will have it’s ups and downs and will have rules coming and going. I personally think that the rules that will be changed sooner rather than later, will be the rules that allow guys like Fitch and co and other wrestlers kill the fight. What I mean is that the rules will be changed so that a fighter can’t control and stop the opponent from being able to attack or a fighter using negative fighting tactics, like smothering, controlling and wearing on an opponent in the clinch and on the ground as the the main means of … (for lack of a better word) “attack”. It is a spectator sport and it’s money comes from ticket sales and PPVs. People want to see exciting skillful flowing MMA and not a fighter smothering and controlling the opponent to a dec. I’m sorry to those fans of the style of grinding. It is just exploitation of the rules and not really in the spirit of martial arts. When you are 5 and just learning martial arts do you think of lying on top of some body and grinding to a dec? no you think of KOing, or finishing them. I can’t remember Bruce Lee starring in any movies where at the end he controlled and smothered the bad guy for 25 mins. Wrestling is and will remain a big part of MMA but at the moment in the US it is too easy to exploit the rules and stop the opponent from being dangerous by using you wrestling to put him on his back and keep him there. Wrestling is by far the most important aspect of US MMA today and it is not uncommon for a wrestler to have good success in MMA without any significant training in any other aspect of MMA.
    Are these guys not capable of winning with submission or KO? If so, should they be allowed such success?. I don’t think so. Those that are able to finish should be rewarded far more than those that can’t.
    Make it harder to grind and give more reward to the most skilled martial artists.
    Just my opinion.

  • I agree with you to a degree MMA-Logic. But more than anything I think the rule of passing guard and/or landing effective damage should be more enforced. Case in point Forrest vs. Franklin, that whole first round should’ve been stood up but Forrest landed the occasional shot which kept it on the ground, on the flip side of things Fitch didnt even attempt to pass BJ’s guard yet he landed 147 unanswered shots from said position, so he did make effective use of holding someone down and trying to score a victory.
    Like I said everything but stomps should be legal to a downed opponent. A stomp is just too brutal.


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