The event that has already broken viewership records for Showtime and Strikeforce is already hitting a few snags. It's something we've discussed that could be problematic, although for slightly different reasons. Nevertheless, the April card featuring Alistair Overeem vs. Fabricio Werdum is now going to be in California (not Japan), but it won't feature either of the second round of heavyweight grand prix bouts. Sherdog.com has more:
Sherdog.com learned today via sources close to the promotion that Strikeforce is planning to run its previously scheduled April date in California, and that the two remaining quarterfinal bouts will most likely be pushed off the card.
A fight between Strikeforce lightweight champion Gilbert Melendez and Japanese slugger Tatsuya Kawajiri is expected to comprise one of the top two spots on the bill, while welterweight champion Nick Diaz is expected to fill the other slot against a yet-to-be-named opponent.
An early read suggests the April event being held in Japan did not materialize
Admittedly, Melendez vs. Kawajiri and Diaz vs Paul Daley are all excellent, exciting fights, but their value is tangential to the most relevant issue: the momentum and integrity of the tournament.
For what it's worth, ESPN's Josh Gross said he's not so sure about the Sherdog report:
Sherdog cites unnamed sources that Strikeforce's 2nd leg of HW GP not on April 9 card. Counters what I heard today re: St. Louis or Houston.
I'm not sure what to believe. Coker won't get back to me. People on his staff say they have no idea what he has planned.
Make of this what you will. More as this develops.