After countless weeks of rumor mongering, Strikeforce has officially announced their highly talked about January 29th fight card. The San Jose, California based promotion finally confirmed two championship scraps will headline the Showtime broadcast.
Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza puts his middleweight belt on the line for the first time when he squares off with “Ruthless” Robbie Lawler in the night’s co-main event. Nick Diaz makes his second welterweight title defense when he faces Brazilian powerhouse Evangelista “Cyborg” Santos in the card’s featured attraction.
Souza took a unanimous decision win over Tim Kennedy at “Strikeforce: Houston.” to capture won the open middleweight crown. The 31-year-old owns a 13-2 record overall, with 10 of his victories coming by way of submission.
It took Lawler all of 50 seconds to dispose of veteran Matt Lindland at “Strikeforce: Henderson vs. Babalu 2” earlier this month. The former EliteXC 185-pound champ has ended 15 of his 18 wins via some form of knockout.
Diaz dons an impressive 23-7 (1 NC) resume and was last seen steamrolling bitter rival KJ Noons this past October. The controversial grappler became Strikeforce’s first 170-pound title holder by defeating Marius Zaromskis in January.
Santos, the husband of Strikeforce’s 145-pound queen Cristiane “Cyborg” Santos, owns a respectable 18-13 professional record. The Brazilian violently put Marius Zaromskis down at “Strikeforce: Los Angeles” the last time he took the stage.
In addition, Strikeforce confirmed Herschel Walker will return to the cage to face Scott Carson in a heavyweight bout. Roger Gracie will also battle former South African national wrestling champ Trevor Prangley in a 265-pound affair.
Don’t spend all of your Christmas money in one place. Tickets for the star-studded show go on sale Monday, December 27th, at 1PM ET/10AM PT at Ticketmaster.com and Strikeforce.com.
Showtime is expected to air only four live bouts – instead of the customary five – courtesy of the two title tangos featured in the card. The curtain will be drawn at 10PM ET/PT.
Here are the fighters rumored/expected to participate inside the HP Pavilion in San Jose:
Trevor Prangley vs. Roger Gracie
Herschel Walker vs. Scott Carson
Tim Kennedy vs. Jason “Mayhem” Miller
Robbie Lawler vs. Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza (Strikeforce Middleweight Champion)
Evangelista “Cyborg” Santos vs. Nick Diaz (Strikeforce Welterweight Champion)