After having been tentatively scheduled to make his debut for Strikeforce during a May event in Seattle, Washington, undefeated heavyweight prospect Brett Rogers recent got the call from Strikeforce officials that he is expected to be moved up to its April 11 event in San Jose in a bout to be televised on Showtime.
FiveOuncesOfPain.com confirmed the news on Saturday with a source close to Rogers’ camp. As of now, Rogers’ participation is not official as bout agreements have yet to be presented. However, several options for opponents have been discussed and his addition to the card could be finalized shortly.
Strikeforce and Showtime are looking to fill the fifth and final slot of the televised portion of its April 11 event at the HP Pavilion due to the fact that a planned welterweight bout between Jake Shields and Joe Riggs was scrapped after Strikeforce officials decided to move Shields into a headlining slot in May against former EliteXC middleweight champion Robbie Lawler.
If tapped to compete on short notice, Rogers is expected to be ready as word from inside his camp is that his training was going extremely well in preparation for May. In an effort to expand his game, Rogers has also added a jiu-jitsu coach and has been receiving additional instruction regarding submissions.
One of many fighters caught in limbo after ProElite suspended operations last October, Rogers has not competed since recording a first round knockout over Jon Murphy on May 31 of last year. The historic fight vs. Murphy served as the first-ever mixed martial arts fight to be televised live on prime-time network television as a part of CBS’ Saturday Night Fights franchise. The win improved Rogers’ official record to 8-0 including notable wins under the EliteXC banner against James Thompson and Ralph Kelly.
Rogers had been scheduled to compete on Nov. 8 vs. Paul Buentello during a planned EliteXC event in Reno, Nevada but the entire card was canceled follow ProElite’s decision to suspend operations. A proposed fight vs. Josh Barnett during Affliction’s “Day of Reckoning” in January was never finalized after ProElite and Affliction became embattled in an argument over territorial issues such as who would own the television rights to the fight.