i just removed wordpress on two of my sites and @Russ and the guys at Pixel Exit are doing a custom style for me that integrates the ExtraPortal addon. This will mimic the look of a blog for the front page, but of course everything is connected to XF. now users can comment in the forums, rather than facebook/disquss comments or wordpress comments.
And no matter what I did, wordpress stayed ridiculously slow, even when i had a strong dedicated server and caching. add a premium theme and less than 10 plugins, and you're skating on molasses.
I don't like wordpress particularly - but I'll have to use what I can. What I don't like about it - is that for every gaming site I want to launch, I'm stuck with "one size fits all" skins... and not... gaming skins. *sigh*
I can't ditch wordpress because I need to present my niche blogs as a magazine/blog in order to be recognized as a news site - otherwise I'd have my hand slapped by community-driven submission sites like N4G which has recently allowed forum sites on blogging extentions like Extra Portal, but that'll cost me more to launch.