An April 9 Strikeforce card already featuring title defenses from champions Gilbert Melendez and Nick Diaz got another injection of talent today in form of a bout between Lyle Beerbohm and Shinya Aoki. Known for unique choices of ring attire and high quality grappling, both lightweights will also be looking to bounce back from defeat though technically Aoki is riding a three-fight winning streak where Mixed Martial Arts is concerned.
News of the potential pairing was first reported by MMA-Japan citing Aoki himself, then later confirmed by HeavyMMA with a nod from Strikeforce officials. Five Ounces of Pain has also been able to confirm the fight is in place with Beerbohm.
“Fancy Pants” endured the first loss of his career last month at Strikeforce Challengers 14 in the form of a unanimous decision to Pat Healy. Prior to the outpointing Beerbohm had won fifteen fights in a row with thirteen finishes in the bunch. He holds past wins over Duane Ludwig and Vitor Ribeiro.
Aoki has been sidelined since suffering a knockout to kickboxer Yuichiro Nagashima in the MMA portion of a mixed-rules bout on New Year’s Eve in Japan. However, he is officially 3-0 in his last trio of outings based on the format including an opening round submission of Tatsuya Kawajiri at DREAM 15 in July. The April match-up will be his second under the Strikeforce banner and his first of 2011. The talented tap-out artist has also beaten the likes of J.Z. Cavalcante, Caol Uno, and Eddie Alvarez.
Also set for action in San Diego at the event, Diaz will defend his belt against powerful British striker Paul Daley while Melendez puts his up for grabs against the aforementioned Kawajiri. Gegard Mousasi will also face Mike Kyle on the live Showtime broadcast.
PHOTO CREDIT – STRIKEFORCE