Scott Coker and Bjorn Rebney argue over who's sending who SMS messages, as Alvarez vs Melendez is nowhere in sightPosted on October 31, 2010, 09:36 AM by Anton Gurevich
Sometimes dreams go way too far from the reality. The talk about a superfight between Bellator Lightweight Champion Eddie Alvarez and Strikeforce Lightweight Champion Gilbert Melendez has been around now for a couple of good months. And with other great potential match-ups between Nick Diaz and Ben Askren, Jacare Souza and Hector Lombard, the fans are pressuring both Rebney and Coker to arrange the match-ups. Perhaps this is what got them in this unusual situation, where two of the most influental men in MMA are arguing about SMS messages.
Here's what Scott Coker had to say via Sherdog about Bjorn Rebney messaging him to arrange the fight:
“Bjorn’s saying he’s texting me 11, 12 times an hour. I’m not sure if he’s trying to be a level-five clinger or anything like that, but I haven’t received one text from the guy. I’m not sure what the motivation is, but maybe it’s just his way of staying in the media, staying in the press. [...] It’s very obvious to me he’s using the media as a platform to try to do his business, but that’s not how we’re going to do business. If he wants to do business, call me or fly out here, come sit down with me. If there’s a deal to be made, we’ll try to make it, but I’m not going to do it in the media. That’s for sure.”
In response, Bellator PR Agency released the following statement in regards to Scott Coker's comments (props to BloodyElbow.com):
"An article ran earlier today in which Scott Coker denied the fact that Bjorn Rebney had reached out to him multiple times in an attempt to discuss setting up a super-fight between Bellator Champion Eddie Alvarez and Strikeforce Champion Gilbert Melendez. This is inaccurate.
I have attached four (4) recent text messages sent from Bjorn's cell phone to Scott Coker over just the last week regarding this matter. The first set of attachments (1-4) reflects the accurate cell phone of Scott Coker and the second set of attachments (1.2-4.2) indicates Scott Coker's accurate name. Bjorn has additionally called Scott and left a collection of voice mail messages in an attempt to schedule a meeting where they could discuss this fight that Gilbert Melendez (Strikeforce Champion) asked for. You will see that each text message is sent to Scott's personal phone which you can confirm. This is same number Bjorn Rebney used to reach Scott previously.
Additionally, as you are probably aware, Bjorn attempted to reach Scott for a 3 week period during the time when Gilbert had initially publicly called for this bout to occur on June 25, 2010."
In my opinion, Strikeforce and Bellator are putting the most exciting fights this year. I'm totally enjoying Strikeforce's production so far, and think it's a legit alternative to one of the UFC in terms of quality. Unfortunately, this is far from being enough to stand against the UFC. I'll go too far, especially in light of this SMS-gate, and say that the only way for Strikeforce and Bellator to move forward - is merging. Eddie Alvarez vs. Gilbert Melendez could be a good start, as the winner of this fight will add the necessary enigma to his name, which will make fans wonder "What happens if this guy fights the current UFC Champ?".
WEC is a strong addition to the UFC. It will give Dana White the neccessary depth to put a title fight on 80% of the events, driving more and more attention from MMA fans around the World. If Strikeforce and Bellator want to stay on the radar, they have to think about a good response.
There's a very good Latin phrase: Duobus litigantibus, tertius gaudet. While two men argue, the third one rejoices. Gilbert Melendez's recent interview to Sherdog.com is a perfect example:
“I think we’re getting warmer. You guys are talking about it. Everyone’s talking about it. Someone’s going to get backed into a corner. We’re going to figure out why it’s not happening eventually, and that person’s probably going to be cornered in and they’re probably going to have to give in. Because everyone seems like they’re up for it. Bjorn, Scott, Eddie and I. So there’s something going on where we can’t come to an agreement. I think eventually it’s going to come out, and with media and everyone talking about it, I think we’re getting a lot closer and a lot warmer.
If I’m still with Strikeforce, I think that fight does need to happen. The only other way is if I move on and somehow I’m in the UFC fighting out there. If I beat Josh Thomson again, if I beat Shinya again, it’s not really going to do nothing for my status or to make my spot go up. … That’s why I want this fight.”
Time for Scott Coker and Bjorn Rebney to put their differences aside, and make this happen. The fans want it. MMA needs it.