Strikeforce GP Continues June 8th, Two Title Fights Booked For April 9
NEW YORK (March 2, 2011) â€“ The STRIKEFORCE World Grand Prix -- Heavyweight Tournament will continue on Saturday, June 18 at American Airlines Center in Dallas, Texas, LIVE on SHOWTIMEÂ® (10 p.m. ET/PT, delayed on the West Coast).
The date originally reserved for continuation of the three-stage, single-elimination tournament comprised of eight of the worldâ€™s top heavyweights, April 9, will now feature a terrific STRIKEFORCE World Championship Doubleheader from Valley View Casino Center in San Diego, Calif., formerly the San Diego Sports Arena.
In the second event of the tournament, STRIKEFORCE Heavyweight World Champion Alistair â€œThe Demolition Manâ€ Overeem (34-11, 1 NC) will face the only man to tap out MMA legend Fedor â€œThe Last Emperorâ€ Emelianenko, the Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu specialist Fabricio Werdum (14-4-1) and the heavy-handed Brett â€œThe Grimâ€ Rogers (11-2) will take on former UFC World Champion Josh Barnett (29-5).
â€œSTRIKEFORCE is coming off a record presale and impressive attendance for the kickoff of the Grand Prix at IZOD Center in New Jersey that also drew a record viewership on SHOWTIME for live MMA,â€ said STRIKEFORCE CEO Scott Coker. â€œTo build on the tremendous momentum from New Jersey we needed the proper time to promote an event of this magnitude, which is why we have decided to continue the Tournament on June 18 at American Airlines Center in Dallas, a venue that has been identified as one of the premier sports and entertainment venues in the U.S.â€
Coker continued: â€œWe have a great relationship with the Texas State Athletic Commission, who, along with the American Airlines Center, is enthused to host the Grand Prix.â€
STRIKEFORCE Welterweight World Champion Nick Diaz (24-1, 1 NC) will defend his title in a highly anticipated grudge match against the brawling Paul â€œSemtexâ€ Daley (26-9-2) in the April 9 main event. Gilbert Melendez (18-2) will make the second defense of his STRIKEFORCE Lightweight World Title against the powerful Tatsuya Kawajiri (27-6-2). Also on the April 9 card is a bitter showdown between current DREAM Light Heavyweight Champion Gegard Mousasi and Mike Kyle.
â€œWe are fortunate to replace the April 9 date with a tremendous World Championship Doubleheader featuring the eagerly awaited showdown between Nick and Paul and the sensational matchup between Gilbert and Tatsuya,â€ Coker said. â€œThis is a fight everyone has been waiting for and Iâ€™d like to thank DREAM for allowing Tatsuya to come to the U.S. to take on our Lightweight World Champion.â€
For more information on SHOWTIME Sports, including exclusive video, photos and news links on SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING and STRIKEFORCE mixed martial arts telecasts, along with access to the SHOWTIME Sports FacebookÂ® and TwitterÂ® pages, please go to http://Sports.Sho.com.