Daniel Cormier called out Frank Mir and Jon Jones Saturday night in Oklahoma City. | Dave Mandel/Sherdog.com
For the most part, Strikeforce’s farewell was devoid of suspense. Heavy favorites dominated the majority of the evening at the Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City, Okla., on Saturday night, as Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza, Gegard Mousasi, Josh Barnett and Daniel Cormier rolled in impressive fashion on the Strikeforce “Marquardt vs. Saffiedine” main card.
The tone of event changed when Tarec Saffiedine stepped into the cage, however. A promotional mainstay who first made his mark on the Challengers series, Saffiedine put on a kickboxing clinic against Nate Marquardt, battering the UFC veteran with leg kicks for much of the five-round affair. For his efforts, Saffiedine walked away as the promotion’s final 170-pound ruler. Before we put Strikeforce to rest for good, here is a by-the-numbers look at the California-based organization’s final event, with statistics courtesy of FightMetric.com.
64: Number of events held by Strikeforce since the San Jose, Calif.-based promotion opened up shop on May 31, 1997. During that 5,766-day period, the promotion presided over approximately 604 bouts, ending with its 11-fight offering in Oklahoma City.
672: Days that Strikeforce remained in business after it was announced that Zuffa had purchased the promotion on March 12, 2011. The organization, for all intents and purposes, closed up shop at the conclusion of Saturday night’s event.
35: Total UFC bouts among the 22 fighters on the Strikeforce “Marquardt vs. Saffiedine” card. Only Marquardt (14), Herman (13), Kyle (3) and Barnett (5) had previously competed inside the Octagon. It is currently unclear how much of the Strikeforce roster will be absorbed by the UFC.
3: Welterweight champions in Strikeforce history. Nick Diaz captured the promotion’s inaugural 170-pound title by defeating Marius Zaromskis on Jan. 30, 2010. He would defend the belt three times before vacating the title to sign with the UFC. Marquardt won the title by defeating Tyron Woodley this past July, and Saffiedine closed the book on the strap by outpointing “The Great” on Saturday night.
116: Significant strikes landed by Saffiedine in becoming Strikeforce’s last 170-pound champion. The Belgian fighter increased the volume of his attacks in the championships rounds, outlanding Marquardt 61 to 26 over the course of the final 10 minutes.
.580: Significant striking accuracy for Saffiedine, who landed 116 of 201 strikes attempted. By comparison, Marquardt landed 68 of his 205 significant strikes, a 33 percent clip.
9: Takedowns successfully defended – out of 10 attempts – by Saffiedine. The powerful Marquardt, a former middleweight, was expected to be able to ground the Team Quest member repeatedly, but Saffiedine was taken down only once in the fight, in the second round.
3: Arm-triangle choke finishes in three Strikeforce victories for Barnett, who forced Nandor Guelmino who gave in to the hold 2:11 into their heavyweight bout. “The Warmaster” owns a total of 20 submission victories during his 16-year professional career.
26: First-round finishes in the 38-fight career of Gegard Mousasi, who submitted American Kickboxing Academy representative Mike Kyle with a rear-naked choke 4:09 into opening frame of their light heavyweight affair.
.764: Percentage of Ronaldo Souza’s victories that have ended via submission after “Jacare” earned his 13th such victory by eliciting a tapout from “TUF 3” alumnus Ed Herman with a first-round kimura.
8: Significant strikes by which K.J. Noons outlanded Ryan Couture in a split-decision defeat. Noons outlanded Couture in rounds two (23 to 13) and three (18 to 17), while Couture held a 14-to-11 edge in round one. Neither fighter landed a takedown in the bout.
6-0: Strikeforce record in non-title bouts for Tim Kennedy, who submitted Trevor Smith with a third-round guillotine choke in an undercard middleweight tussle. The Jackson’s MMA product only lost five-round decisions to Ronaldo Souza and Luke Rockhold during his tenure with the promotion.
249: Total combined strikes thrown by Pat Healy and Kurt Holobaugh in their lightweight clash. A short-notice opponent, Holobaugh held his own in the striking department with Healy, outlanding his him 80 to 74. However, Healy landed three takedowns and attempted four submissions en route to a unanimous decision victory.