Kyle Terada-US PRESSWIRE
Well prior to the Strikeforce Heavyweight World Grand Prix Final, it was announced that the eventual victor would have to fight one more time under the promotion's banner before moving over to the UFC.
As it turns out, the loser will have to do the same.
According to a report in USA Today citing Strikeforce and UFC parent company Zuffa as the source, Josh Barnett's next fight will also be in Strikeforce.
Barnett (31-6) fell to Cormier in a one-sided unanimous decision at last Saturday's Strikeforce: Barnett vs. Cormier event. Given his past history with UFC president Dana White, there had been speculation about what his future might hold given a loss, but now we know that he will be kept in the fold, though for Strikeforce, for at least one fight.
Just days before the final, Barnett said he would take his future as it came, with no concerns about where it may take him.
"My plans are to keep fighting in Strikeforce," he said then. "If I have another fight lined up, if I were to win, when I win this one, and so you know, thinking about all that stuff is enough to give you a headache. Maybes, what ifs, totally unimportant for a fighter’s mind. A manager can go ahead and think about that all they want to, ad nauseum. Let themselves wrack their brains at night all about it. Fans, journalists, by all means. You know, throw it off each other as much as you want, get in arguments, start near riots, burn stuff, all that. Me? I do not care. It does not matter."
As for who he and Cormier might face in their respective future bouts, that question remains unanswered. The UFC has already absorbed all of Strikeforce's heavyweight talent aside from those two, so either Zuffa will have to send two UFC fighters over to challenge them in one-offs, or bring in outside talent.
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