Strikeforce “Fedor vs Rogers” took place earlier this evening at the Sears Centre in Hoffman Estates, Illinois.
In the night’s main event, Fedor Emelianenko fought for the first time in front of a massive American audience against hard-hitting heavyweight Brett Rogers.
In the co-main event, Jake Shields and Jason “Mayhem” Miller went to battle for the vacant Strikeforce middleweight championship.
Gegard Mousasi took on Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou in a light heavyweight contest.
Fabricio Werdum and Antonio Silva opened the show in a heavyweight bout.
Results, thoughts and live gate (when available) after the jump.
- Fedor Emelianenko defeats Brett Rogers via TKO (Strikes) in Round Two
- Jake Shields defeats Jason “Mayhem” Miller via Unanimous Decision
- Gegard Mousasi defeats Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou via TKO (Strikes) in Round Two
- Fabricio Werdum defeats Antonio Silva via Unanimous Decision
- Marloes Coenen defeats Roxanne Modafferi via Submission (Armbar) in Round One
- Jeff Curran defeats Dustin Neace via Submission (Injury) in Round One
- Shamar Bailey defeats John Kolosci via Unanimous Decision
- Nate Moore defeats Louis Taylor via Submission (Strikes) in Round Two
- Christian Uflacker defeats Jonatas Novaes via Unanimous Decision
- DeRay Davis vs. Mark Miller
Antonio Silva vs. Fabricio Werdum: Silva and Werdum start the show off strong with a solid fight. Werdum spent the majority of the first round trying not to get his head caved in. Silva knocked him down early and went in for the kill dropping bombs. Werdum was able to hang on but couldn’t mount any significant offense for the rest of the round. Werdum had better luck in the second scoring a few takedowns that won him a very close round. Silva’s gas tank started to run dry in the third and Werdum took over. Werdum landed several knees from the Thai clinch and controlled the fight on the ground to take the round convincingly. I had it 10-9 Silva, 10-9 Werdum and 10-9 Werdum. The judges agreed and Werdum earns the decision. Solid win for Werdum which puts him in the running for the Fedor-Rogers winner.
Gegard Mousasi vs. Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou: No one gave Sokoudjou a chance against Mousasi. It was supposed to be a quick and easy beatdown for Mousasi. Well, someone forget to tell Sokoudjou because he came to fight. In the first round, it was the best Sokoudjou we’ve ever seen. He was a lot more patient than we’ve seen him in the past and he didn’t give Mousasi any huge openings. He scored a little on the feet but his judo throws were the difference maker in the round. It was close, Mousasi had a few moments of his own, most notably the trip from his used from his back to gain top control in the final seconds, but Sok did enough to take it. Going into the second, it seemed like a very real possibility that Sok could pull off the upset. But, it didn’t happen. Mousasi exploited Sok’s still developing ground game, manged to get top control and unleashed a tactical missile strike on Sok’s head and body forcing the ref to stop it. Sok may have lost, but he proved he’s still maturing as a fighter and may have a bright future in this sport after all.
Jason “Mayhem” Miller vs. Jake Shields: If you like a great ground war, you liked the show Jake Shields and Mayhem Miller put on tonight. It had it’s dull moments but there were a ton of transitions, reversals, etc to make it entertaining. Shields controlled most of the action. He was relentless with his takedowns taking Mayhem out his “punch him in his face” gameplan. Mayhem had his moments though, most notably sinking in a tight rear-naked choke in the final seconds of the third round. Shields was on his way to going to sleep for the first time in his career until the bell saved him. Another second or two and it could have been over. Jake kept it together though and dominated the final two rounds on the ground to earn the decision and win the Strikeforce middleweight championship. Even though Cung Le’s fighting in December, it’s a shame he’s only fitting it in between movies because him against Shields would make for a very interesting fight. Would Cung’s takedown defense be enough to keep Jake Shields standing where he could surely score the knockout? Unfortunately, we’re not gonna get the answer.
Fedor Emelianenko vs. Brett Rogers: They say one of the keys to greatness is the ability to overcome adversity, and like he has before, Fedor Emelianenko did that tonight against a game Brett Rogers. In the opening exchange of the fight, Rogers landed a job that cut the bridge of Fedor’s nose wide open. Blood poured out and it was clear early on breathing became a problem for Emelianenko. Against a giant like Rogers, it would have spelled the beginning of the end for many a foe, but not for Fedor. He stayed calm and composed like he always does and brought the fight to Brett. Fedor got a takedown fairly early on, which many including myself thought would be the end of the night for Brett, but Rogers used his strength to scramble back to his feet and trapped Fedor against the cage. Once Fedor broke loose, he unleashed a series of hooks that put Brett off balance and Fedor secured another takedown. A failed kimura attempt turned into a reversal for Brett. Rogers rained down bombs from the top, but Fedor was able to escape with an armbar attempt and regained top control for the remainder of the round. In the second, Brett managed to tie Fedor up against the cage, but that was about it. After they split up and reset their feet, out of nowhere Fedor threw the same overhand right he knocked Arlovski out with, and sure enough, Brett crumpled to the ground just like the man he knocked out in 22 seconds. Fedor pounced and Big John stopped it.
I got to give Brett a lot of credit. He fared a lot better than I thought he would. He was upset without himself after the fight for what he didn’t do, but he ought to head back home with his head held high because he was impressive even in defeat. He has a bright future ahead of him, but tonight he just didn’t have what it takes to dethrone the king.
As for Fedor, his reign continues. He’s looking at either a title fight against Alistair Overeem or a match against Fabricio Werdum. As good as Fabricio is, I really don’t see that fight going much differently than the Nogueira fights, but Werdum may be able to take it the distance if nothing else. The fight I really want to see is Fedor-Overeem though. Overeem’s well-rounded enough to compete with Fedor wherever the fight goes, but the question is if he will crumble against an elite opponent like he has many times before. I don’t think Alistair will win, but I think he’ll give Fedor the best fight we’ve seen in years.
Live Gate & Attendance
Live gate: TBA