What can you say about Keith Jardine? He’s a nice guy and a great MMA personality, but what else?
The Greg Jackson trained fighter could be doomed to face the firing squad at UFC 110 if he loses to young up and comer Ryan Bader. What would he do if he was no longer in the Ultimate Fighting Championship?
There could be some opportunity for Jardine in some other MMA promotions.
Obviously, StrikeForce made some huge strides in 2009 to become the industry’s no. 2 behind the UFC.
Jardine can easily find a home there. The problem that lies with signing with StrikeForce is that there are very few in the light-heavyweight division he could fight.
Gegard Mousasi is one of the most recognized fighters in the weight class and holds the title while Mohammed “King Mo” Lawal sits just behind him.
These are about the only two fights StrikeForce has to offer, unless Dan Henderson decides to keep jumping between divisions.
Henderson jumping back and forth from middleweight to light-heavyweight might be a necessity, at this point, solely for the purpose of keeping fights interesting at both weight classes.
If a home is not found with StrikeForce, what else is there for Keith Jardine?
Hollywood seems to be a safe haven for mixed martial artists, of late. Maybe Jardine can star in another Jason Stathem movie.
If they want to pay Jardine thousands of dollars to say, “Dude, are you OK?” so be it.
The fact is, Jardine is 2-4 since getting that TKO win over Forrest Griffin with three of those losses coming by way of TKO or KO. Dana White mentioned at yesterday’s press conference, “it’s the way they lose fights.” Since Jardine is losing fights and doing it by way of knockout, the mood is that another KO could have UFC brass giving “The Dean of Mean” his walking papers.
As likeable as Keith Jardine is, it will be difficult to justify calling him a gate keeper if Ryan Bader is able to put him away.
Bader has an incredible right hand that can easily put down even some of the toughest chins in the business. One of my prior articles, UFC 110: The Right Way Is Keith Jardine’s Key To Beating Ryan Bader, explains how Jardine can avoid losing this fight.
Where does a win at UFC 110 put Jardine?
Beating Bader will tell MMA and UFC fans that Jardine is not the punching bag of the 205-pound division and he still has the capability of competing at a high level.
The title of gatekeeper may stick if Jardine wins this Saturday, but another win after that could put him back into top ten MMA status and, potentially, start talk of another title shot.
Though a chance at UFC gold is a distant possibility, Jardine may be able to climb his way up the ranks one more time before he says goodbye.
The first test of Jardine’s UFC longevity will come against Ryan Bader this Saturday at UFC 110.