Make sure you don’t get in the way of Mike Kyle in the near future.
Following a press conference to promote this Saturday’s Strikeforce: Barnett vs. Cormier event, Kyle went off on the words spoken by Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker during the event.
Coker, when asked if the Kyle-Rafael Cavalcante match would determine a contender to the vacant Strikeforce light heavyweight title, gave an answer that did not make Kyle all-too-happy.
Coker’s comments that the winner would progress towards the status of being a contender left Kyle visible upset. He spoke with USA Today’s Sergio Non outside the press conference.
“I think it’s bullcrap. You heard what he said – maybe I’ll be the No. 1 contender. I haven’t lost any 205-pound fights. I definitely believe that I’m the No. 1 contender. I was told before I’d be the No. 1 contender. It is what it is. I’m really upset by it. It makes me not really even want to fight.”
Coker did confirm that the winner is likely to be regarded as either the No. 1 or No. 2 contender, placing them in a bout for the strap in the near future.
“This fight has title implications, for sure. I think whoever wins this fight will get the title shot. To say he’s the No. 1 contender? I think that’s yet to be determined.”
Kyle’s only two losses since 2008 have come at heavyweight against Antonio Silva and Fabricio Werdum. He holds a career record of 19-8-1, including one no-contest. Cavalcante is a former Strikeforce champion with an 11-3 record, but was defeated by Kyle back in 2009.
Photo credit: Esther Lin/STRIKEFORCE