http://www.usatoday.com/sports/mma/2009-02-15-strikeforce_N.htm Strikeforce resuscitating careers stuck in limbo Heavyweight Kimbo Slice, right, fighting James Thompson in May, could be headed to Strikeforce, which is interested in adding Slice and women's star Gina Carano to its growing stable of fighters. By Beau Dure, USA TODAY The Kimbo Limbo is finally ending. On Oct. 4, last-minute replacement Seth Petruzelli knocked out YouTube sensation Kimbo Slice in 14 seconds, live on CBS. EliteXC, the promotion that brought mixed martial arts to prime-time network TV, didn't last much longer. Ailing parent company ProElite closed down most of its operations and reduced itself to a skeleton crew. For four months, multiple interview requests went unreturned, and fighters such as Slice and Gina Carano were left idle. Strikeforce recently bought many of ProElite's assets. The deal can bring several fighters back into action after an agonizing wait. Cris "Cyborg" Santos, poised to face Carano after some dominant wins, has come to terms with Strikeforce, as has EliteXC middleweight champion Robbie Lawler. Also out of limbo is Showtime, CBS' premium cable channel, which aired many EliteXC events. Coinciding with the sale of assets to Strikeforce, ProElite reached a deal to retire its debt to Showtime, and Showtime reached a separate deal to broadcast Strikeforce. CBS has not yet made plans to return MMA to prime time. Strikeforce, which already has a deal with NBC for late-night programming, will mark its new relationship with Showtime with a live card April 11 featuring MMA pioneer Frank Shamrock against Nick Diaz. Scott Smith, who twice faced Lawler in EliteXC, will fight Benji Radach. The rest of the card is undetermined while Strikeforce nails down contract details with many of EliteXC's top fighters. Near the top of Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker's wish list: Carano, an explosive fighter and ubiquitous sports media presence. "We're going to continue supporting women's MMA and we're going to be inviting Gina to come fight on April 11," Coker says. "And we've already got confirmation from Cyborg that she is available if we can put that match together. We will be supporting women's MMA in Strikeforce." Strikeforce and Showtime also are interested in Slice, who rose to fame in backyard brawls uploaded to YouTube and headlined two EliteXC cards on CBS. "Kimbo is one that we think we have a future with," Showtime senior VP Ken Hershman says. UFC President Dana White has often scoffed at the attention paid to Slice, but he draws a distinction between Strikeforce's interest and EliteXC's handling of the inexperienced heavyweight. "Building your whole business around Kimbo is insane," White says of Slice. Unlike promoter Affliction, which has put on two pay-per-view events focusing on the heavyweight class, Strikeforce has no quarrel with UFC, the dominant force in MMA. "I'm sure they're going to put on some good shows, and hopefully, they can make that business model work for them," White says. "I've got nothing negative to say about them whatsoever."