For the most part, the event was a success. A couple of the bouts were action packed, including the main event, while others had pretty thrilling endings, such as the Robbie Lawler knockout.
Of course, it's not a Strikeforce show without their formula of flames, fog, dancers and fireworks to go along with mixed martial arts action.
Bobby Lashley vs. Wes Sims: No big surprise with the result. Although Sims only had about a week to prepare for this fight, I don't think the result would have changed much even if he would have had six months to train. With Lashley's wrestling pedigree and his overall strength, there was no doubt that he was going to walk away with the win. I take my hat off to Lashley for entering into the sport of MMA at an appropriate pace. He's not attempting to get top billing after only a couple of fights like the other WWE wrestler turned MMA fighter, Brock Lesnar. He's six fights into his career and doesn't expect to start facing top opponents until he has at least eight bouts under his belt.
Robbie Lawler vs. Melvin Manhoef: This was definitely my runner-up for fight of the night. Non-stop action from bell to bell. Manhoef was manhandling Lawler for the much of the fight with precise leg kicks mixed in with well placed hand strikes that had an obvious effect on Lawler's mobility. Wounded, backing up and on the verge of losing, Lawler timed a perfect overhand right just as Manhoef was dropping his hands in preparation for another kick. Lawler's punch dropped Manhoef to the mat. Two more shots finished it off before the ref stopped the fight. This was an awesome come-from-behind win for Lawler, and I'd love to see him take on Scott Smith again for the right to fight Jake Shields for the middleweight belt.
Herschel Walker vs. Greg Nagy: The first thing I noticed right off the bat was how nervous Nagy looked. I guess I would have the same look on my face if somebody told me I had to fight a Heisman Trophy winner in a cage match. There is no way Nagy's three-fight MMA record was ever going to prepare him to fight the absurdly in-shape 47-year-old Walker. That being said, I was still quite surprised by how badly Nagy was performing in the cage, especially for having three fights. Yes, he was fighting a man that looks to be chiseled out of marble, but for a guy that supposedly has a background in Muay Thai, Nagy had absolutely no clinch game. If he could have implemented even the semblance of a stand-up game, he would have been competitive in this fight. Instead, a very green Walker was allowed to fold, contort, and punish Nagy for three straight rounds. It was obvious to many fans how much more Walker really has to learn about the sport. There were several opportunities for him to sink in chokes or other finishing moves, but he didn't have the presences of mind or skill set to execute them. At one point, he and Nagy were clinching in the middle of the cage and Walker had an obvious opportunity to land a knee to Nagy's face. It wasn't until the crowd starting yelling "Knee! Knee!" that Walker finally dropped a knee squarely to Nagy's chin. Other than a few missed finishing opportunities, I thought Walker did a decent job for his first fight in MMA. Will he be back in the cage again? I certainly hope so, but don't put him on the main card. Strikeforce, please have some respect for the sport.
Marloes Coenen vs. Cristiane "Cyborg" Santos: There isn't much to say about this fight other than Cyborg is clearly the best female MMA fighter in the world. Although Coenen, who has been in the MMA game for 10 years, lost this fight, I thought she actually did a fairly solid job defending off of her back, until the very end were she finally succumbed to the pressure and turtled up. She seemed very calm and focused throughout the match, but unfortunately that was no match for Cyborg's obvious strength advantage. At this point, there are not many 145 pounders left in the women's division for Cyborg to annihilate. It's likely that she'll victimize Erin Toughill next.
Nick Diaz vs. Marius Zaromskis: Without a doubt, this was the fight of the night. It was a fast-paced match, with both fighters taking and doing damage. At one point, Zaromskis dropped Diaz with a flurry of punches but was unable to finish him off when he got Diaz to the ground. Once Diaz was able to establish the proper striking distance, he turned the fight around and began picking Zaromskis apart using his six-inch reach advantage. Diaz's uppercut was soon followed by a right hand, dropping Zaromskis to the floor, where the ref then stopped the fight. Diaz becomes the first Strikeforce welterweight champion. Of course, it's no surprise that MMA's bad boy sprinkled in a few f-bombs in his mostly unintelligible post-fight interview. What a class act!