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Alistair Overeem out of the Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix, replaced by Daniel Cormier

It wouldn’t be a day in the MMA world without an injury that cancels a high profile fight. Alistair Overeem, the current Strikeforce heavyweight champion and part of the Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix, is out of the tournament with a toe injury. He was scheduled to square off against Antonio Silva in the semi-finals of the tournament. Instead Daniel Cormier will take his place in the grand prix.

The news was first reported by Tatame.com

The Grand Prix was scheduled to continue on September 10 with Overeem vs. Silva and Josh Barnett vs. Sergei Kharitonov but Overeem wanted his fight pushed back to October in order to have a full training camp coming off the injury. Instead Zuffa has pulled Overeem from the tournament rather than delaying his fight.
“The Reem” entered the tournament as the favorite but didn’t have a great showing in his first round fight against Fabricio Werdum, a lackluster unanimous decision victory. On the other side, “Bigfoot” looked extremely impressive in finishing Fedor Emelianenko in his first round match-up.

With Overeem out, Cormier gets his chance in the spotlight. Originally scheduled as an alternate in the tournament, Cormier fought his way into this position with comfortable decision victories over Devin Cole and Jeff Monson.

Along with the two heavyweight semi-final fights, “Jacare” Souza is expected to defend his middleweight strap against Luke Rockhold on the September 10 card.

*PHOTO CREDIT – ESTHER LIN*

15 COMMENTS
  • MCM says:

    I read on another site that Overeem wasn’t happy with Zuffa telling him when he had to fight (sept 10) and that he’ll decide when he fights and not the company he works for. Can you imagine if Jay Hieron tried to tell Bellator when they would be allowed to hold their tournament matches. Sorry Overeem, but if this is a “tournament”, you either fight or you’re out.

  • MCM says:

    Glad to see Cormier get the nod instead of Griggs or Del Rosario. I think Daniel has the tools to be a major force in MMA. He bit off an extremely tough first fight against Big Foot, but if he gets passed Silva he has the skills to take the whole thing, even against Barnett.

  • I hope what you’re sayin about his refusal to fight isnt true MCM, I really do but I do see the Reem as a bit of a prima donna. Personally I dont feel as fighter should be able to contest when they do or dont want to fight, its a job just like anything else, if I or most people told their boss that they would work when they wanted to work they’d be in the unemployment line. Sadly i find it to be more logical than a toe injury.
    On the flip side great for Cormier who has nothin to lose here. He was an alternate and I truthfully believe he should be at 205, so should he even give bigfoot a good fight, he has nothin to lose here and comes out lookin better than before unless he just gets crushed in 30 seconds.

  • GIKE MOLDBERG says:

    Overeem can now go back to untested competition wherever he chooses-A horse is a horse-Anyways-I am now a lot more excited for the SF HW outcome now that the true underdog is now in place-That being said-I see Cormier defeating Big Head by controlling decision, and losing to Barnett by sub(he is very tricky after all)

  • GIKE MOLDBERG says:

    Zuffa don’t eff around!!!!!

  • Kamakosmo says:

    The Toe injury is B.S.:

    Overeem told Ariel Helwani on Monday’s edition of The MMA Hour that he has not agreed to the proposed Sept. 10 date for the semifinal round of the Strikeforce heavyweight Grand Prix, and his opposition is causing some tension with his new employer.

    “That is not going to take place,” Overeem told Helwani. “Stikeforce has requested me to accept the fight for Sept. 10, to agree on that, but I have not agreed on it and I also had some emails, some questions asked, is the fight confirmed? No, the fight is not confirmed. I do not confirm it and I will not confirm it.”

    “What’s going to happen next, I don’t know. I’ve had some threats of cutting me out of the tournament if I don’t participate. I don’t know if they’re going to do it. Personally, I don’t like to be threatened. If people start talking like that then…be my guest, but then I’m really not going to sing to their tune.”

  • hindsightufuk says:

    my guess either overeems next fight is in the ufc itself, or more likely, he never fights for zuffa again

  • Rece Rock says:

    Overeem just found out the business & Zuffa are much bigger and stronger then he will ever be…

    This guy has always been a bit of a flake.

  • fanoftna33 says:

    I love the new match up with Cormier and Silva, we know Silva has a questionable chin and even with his size he probably will not be able to take Cormier down, so this should be a three round chess match with Bigfoot trying to get Daniel down and dirty boxing and Daniel trying to land a big punch or knee. Hard to call but I will go with big fight experience and say Bigfoot pulls out a decision here.

  • climbarock says:

    Lots of folks here seem to be quite pro-Zuffa, anti-Reem. I’m no AO fan, but I’m all for the fighters squeezing every goddamn penny out of the promoters’ pockets that they can. AO has valuable skills and popularity and shouldn’t just bow down to the Zuffa machine. Who says both semi-final fights need to happen on the same card? The last round was on 2 different cards.

    DW tries to push his weight around with fighters all the time, and when they push back he goes to the fans with his own spin on how things went down. Look at how he ridiculed Machida’s camp last week for asking for “Anderson Silva money.” Now he pulls AO from the tournament for trying to push his match back a month or two, and ridicules him for a “pinky toe” injury. Unbelievable.

    MCM – Overeem is not Jay Heiron.

    SuperDave – Surely you don’t believe every time your boss says “jump” you say “how high?”

  • Rece Rock says:

    DW explained that UFC has 3 cards in October… Showtime wants the card in Sept… that’s it, plain and simple.

    Overeem was a champ who didn’t defend his belt for like a year and a half… Hurt toe or not you don’t enter the tourney thinking you can decide when you fight next it’s a tourney!?!? If he’s hurt like DW said this is why there are alternates… Look the guy is the champ and does have value and skill but if you think your going to play hard ball with the boss and you don’t put in the time to justify your value as an asset to the co. then the results won’t be in your favor… the guy needed to win the tourney and move over to UFC to up his contract instead he thinks he’s worthy of the $ now… sorry Overeem the promotion was on Diaz’ back this whole time not yours…pick and choose your business battles more wisely.

  • MCM says:

    Look I’m not a Dana nuthugger, but this time he’s right. Overeem signed on for the tournament or Grand-Prix or whatever you want to call it. He knows that you don’t get full training camps in tournaments, cause he didn’t defend his SF belt for 2 1/2 years to go compete in tourney’s and grand-prix’s overseas.

    climbarock-
    As far as I can tell, AO isn’t asking for more money, but is instead asking for SF to put on shows at his convenience, when he feels like it. Well guess what, even Randy Couture in his heyday didn’t have that kind of power. So what make Overeem think he does?

  • climbarock says:

    MCM – Fair enough. My post above is a little all over the place, but basically I’m just in favor of fighters getting the most favorable contractual terms they can. MMA fighters are often underpaid and pushed around by promoters (that includes being pressured into taking fights on shorter notice than they’d like), esp. Zuffa, so good on anyone who will challenge the status quo. I wonder if SF/Zuffa did in fact book the venue and promote the event w/o bout agreements in place, or at least speaking with the Overeem camp…that seems crazy to me, but I don’t work in the industry, so what do I know? This whole thing seems like a lot of PR spin, posturing, and outright BS, all stemming from a contract dispute. SF delayed Barnett’s GP match because of licensing issues, but they won’t delay AO’s match because of injury? DW’s “pinky toe” comment was an obvious swipe at Overeem and implies he doesn’t believe the injury is legit.

    Randy Couture, in his heyday, had extremely contentious contract negotiations with the UFC. Remember his 1st “retirement” and attempts to put together a fight with Fedor? Well, Couture lost that gamble, but I respect him for trying. Overeem has championship credentials, and if he wants to throw his weight around, good for him. He’ll fight under the Zuffa umbrella again, cooler heads will prevail because there is money to be made…

    On another note, Cormier is a nice replacement but Bigfoot is legit. Should be a good scrap.

  • Climbarock
    No i dont believe my boss says jump and I say how high But if my boss makes a reasonable request I dont hesitate to do whats asked of me in order to stay employed. The Reem is NOT a big television draw in the US in any sense of the word and watching that last fight with Werdum didnt help his stock at all. For him to believe he can hold up the company because he doesnt want to fight is bogus childish and downright arrogant of him. He’s had plenty of time to recover and if he had a broken toe he would probably still be able to pass medical to fight. The thing is with all of his other statements I dont believe the injury. If AO wants to be thought of amongst the best and a champion than maybe he should act like one instead of throwin a hissy fit because he doesnt like the date.

    Incidentally why should a fighter get to pick and choose his dates? Or any athelete for that matter. Just like anyone else its a job and when you’re scheduled to come into work you come into work. I guess in the end he has the ultimate decision of whether to fight or not but he also has to deal with the consequences which include not fighting, losing money and most importantly his fans losing respect for him in droves.

  • Angry Mike says:

    I think this is a smokescreen. This is a convenient excuse for Overeem to duck the fight with Silva. Overeem is so juiced he has no cardio, and that was painfully obvious in the Werdum fight. Silva was going to make him look even worse, and that would damage his marketability. His injury was a weak excuse, and blaming Zuffa is a way to save face.

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