Business as usual or Damage Control?
Many here and all over the world have been skeptical about White's new catchphrase: "Business as Usual".
Different arguments are given for this various degrees of doubt, a lot of people are currently arguing that the UFC would be better of absorbing Strikeforce in like they did with the WEC and setting up this so called Super Fights. Of course, that's not what UFC's head honcho Dana White said to Ariel Helwani on their exclusive video interview.
White repeteadly mentioned that Strikeforce was going to continue operations as usual, Coker would still on charge and nothing was going to change, except that Zuffa was now the owners and they were going to adverstise each other, in fact the official UFC twitter is already advertising Diaz vs Daley.
This is where a part of the MMA community has their issues, they dont believe Dana White means that things are going to remain the mostly the same as he claims. Dana himself mentioned that there's a lot of people at the other side of the table that don't like him, Fedor and M-1, Showtime, Daley, Barnett, Henderson, Shamrock, ETC. So the working logic is that Dana interview is just a way to keeping the waters relatively calm while he makes his real move, whatever that is.
This, however, is not something i'm ready to agree on, for once i'm ready to believe that Dana White means everything (or most of what) he said on his interview. Dana put a lot, and i mean a lot of emphasis on Business as Usual, Strikeforce is gonna run the same, we are just going to advertise them and give them pointers on production so they can put a better product more up to the UFC standard. This reminds me of the whole WEC ordeal, ZUFFA aquired it at around WEC 25 and when i started watching it at WEC 34 it was already UFC-lite with a blue color shade.
There has been some talk of the UFC wanting to get a premium cable deal for a while, and that something the Showtime/Strikeforce partnership brings to the table, not only that but Showtime/Strikeforce produces a fair number of shows and has been on national TV before(regardless of their ratings), i honestly believe that ZUFFA doesn't have the competent workforce to just fold Strikeforce, sign all their fighters and produce the same numbers of show they did under the UFC banner.
So this is why i believe that is in ZUFFA's best interest to do whatever it takes to keep Strikeforce alive and slowly turn it into the new WEC, or UFC-lite if you might. I'm sure that UFC will eventually merge Strikeforce in, but it won't be until Strikeforce looks exactly like the UFC with another name and a big part of their workforce has their allegiances with ZUFFA.
What am i expecting for now then? Heavy Cross advertising, UFC snatching their top guys when their contracts are up, a change on the Ring Girl outfits and a slow shift in the overall production values to look more like the UFC.
So Business as Usual or Damage Control?
I think is both, Dana wants Strikeforce to do well because it's the business strategy that fits better with his strategy of global expansion.
But then again, i don't have any business degrees.