Two major light heavyweight fights have been added to the September 10 Strikeforce event. Former Strikeforce light heavyweight champion, Rafael Cavalancate, makes his return to action against the undefeated Yoel Romero. Also on the is a contest between top 205 contender Mike Kyle taking on the debuting Marcos Rogerio de Lima. Both fights will take place on the nights preliminary card.
Strikeforce officials have confirmed both bouts.
Coming off a TKO loss to Dan Henderson back in March, “Feijao” looks to bounce back and earn another crack at 205 title. The Brazilian won the title in August 2010, defeating “King” Mo Lawal in the third round by TKO. A training partner of UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva and having never gone to a decision in his career, you can expect Cavalcante to come out looking for the finish.
He may have his hands full with Romero though, a freestyle wrestling stand out who took silver in the 2000 Olympic games. Like his opponent in September, Romero has never been to a decision, winning all four of his professional MMA bouts by (T)KO.
After competing against heavyweight Antonio Silva in his last fight, Kyle welcomes a drop back down to his natural weight of 205. On the cusp of a shot at the title, the American Kickboxing Academy fighter was forced to pull out of a scheduled fight for former champion Gegard Mousasi earlier this year with a broken hand. Finally healed and ready to fight, Kyle will look to continue his climb up the light heavyweight ladder.
To do so, he must first defeat the undefeated de Lima, who is coming off a victory over Paulo Filho. With no losses in eight fights, “Pezao” has only been to a decision once in his career, finishing six opponents by (T)KO and one by submission.
Strikeforce: Barnett vs. Kharitonov is scheduled for September 10 at the US Bank Arena in Cincinnati, Ohio. The night will be headlined by the two Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix Semifinal fights as Daniel Cormier faces Antonio Silva in the co-main event while Josh Barnett goes toe to toe with Sergei Kharitonov in the evenings feature fight.
*PHOTO CREDIT – ESTHER LIN/STRIKEFORCE*