The UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championship) is further their dominance of the professional MMA world by agreeing to purchase their lone competitor, Strikeforce, sources revealed Saturday (March 12).
According to ESPN.com, Zuffa LLC (owner and operator of the UFC), has agreed, in principle, to purchase Strikeforce, which entered MMA realm in 2006.
UFC president, Dana White, confirmed reports, telling MMAFighting.com that Zuffa had purchased Strikeforce.
“That is true,” White said when asked, specifically, if the UFC had purchased Strikeforce. “Every year, we take this thing to another level. Some of the deals we’re working on now — international and all the other things, and obviously acquiring Strikeforce now.
“It’s literally official right now. We just made the deal,” he continued, adding, “We need more fights. Let’s face the facts: Strikeforce is a brand that fans have come to like. They do have a following, people enjoy the fights that they are putting on, and it made sense to us.”
An official announcement is expected as soon as Monday (March 14).
Apparently, negotiations between the two sports organizations have been going on for months, and both have finally reached an agreement.
Details regarding the deal are still unwraps, at least, until an official announcement has been made.
Strikeforce was initially founded as a kickboxing organization, but in 2006, they entered the MMA realm with their debut event, Shamrock vs. Gracie. It marked Frank Shamrock’s return after a three-year absence, in which he fought Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu vet, Cesar Gracie.
Shamrock KO’d Gracie with a punch at 0:20 seconds in the first round, and has since gone on to become UFC’s biggest competitor. They also boasted a roster that included argubly the best fighter in MMA, Fedor Emelianenko.
UFC recently merged with its other competitor, WEC (World Extreme Cagefighting), last October.