It looks like the Strikeforce April 17 event is all but officially announced for CBS. Jake Shields tweeted earlier today that his title defense against Dan Henderson and the rumored Gegard Mousasi vs. King Mo fight are official. MMA Weekly confirmed those two bouts will co-headline the event.
Charismatic fighter Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal has signed on to fight for the Strikeforce light heavyweight title when he faces champion Gegard Mousasi on April 17 at the promotion’s next major CBS card.
The fight was confirmed to MMAWeekly.com by sources close to the situation on Monday.
The bout between Mousasi and Lawal will serve as co-main event for the upcoming Strikeforce show in April, headlined by middleweight champ Jake Shields defending his title against Dan Henderson. MMAWeekly.com will have more news on this event in the coming days.
Another report adds that there will be a third title fight on the show. Josh Gross is reporting it will be a lightweight title fight between Gilbert Melendez and Shinya Aoki. Herschel Walker is heavily rumored to round out the televised card to help drive ratings. The announcement scheduled for today has been pushed to tomorrow.
Meanwhile, no one seems to have nailed down exactly what’s going on with Fedor yet. At one point, he was all set to fight Fabricio Werdum on the aforementioned card, then on an unannounced May card, and now of all of a sudden M-1 is apparently renegotiating his contract and possibly shopping him around. Josh Gross has confirmed the former. Here’s Head Kick Legend on the latter.
According to M-1 Global, Strikeforce has not honored the contract that they signed with M-1 and the only way Fedor will fight in a Strikeforce cage again is if they sign a new contract. M-1 is looking for a partner and to have Strikeforce cards featuring Fedor to be fully co-promoted cards.
To put it bluntly, M-1 Global is looking at other potential partners right now if Strikeforce doesn’t shape up. Generally speaking, that does not mean there is a healthy relationship with Strikeforce and that the chances of seeing Fedor fighting outside of Strikeforce have gone up. Now, is this just them trying to scare Strikeforce into conceding to their demands or are they seriously shopping Fedor and M-1 Global around is the question.
So basically if you take M-1’s word for it, everything is back to square one. Ridamndiculous if you ask me. I love Fedor, but his fight bookings always turn into such a huge production. It’s old, tired and frustrating.
While Fedor’s future is once again up in the air, Strikeforce’s other elusive heavyweight, Alistair Overeem, may actually make his return to the organization in the near future, or at least his management is hinting at it.
After discussing Alistair Overeem‘s future again with his management, the only comment was that the next announcement we will hear about Alistair Overeem will come from Strikeforce.
If he does, it will likely be the May event since Alistair is expected to fight for either K-1 or DREAM in late March/early April and Golden Glory on April 24.
And last but not least, Andrei Arlovski has finally found a new home in Strikeforce. According to Sherdog, he has signed a 16-month, multi-fight contract and is expected to face Antonio Silva on the May event, tentatively scheduled for May 15 in St. Louis.
Update: Well here we go. Alistair Overeem is telling MMA Junkie he’s probably going to fight Brett Rogers on May 15, however it will be a non-title affair. Alistair had this to say about Brett.
“He’s an excellent opponent,” Overeem said. “I’m looking forward to [smacking] his face and his loud mouth. I’m really happy that Strikeforce came with this fight so now we can settle things once and for all.”
His heavyweight title has kind of become a joke at this point, so whatever with that, but Alistair Overeem vs. Brett Rogers is a seriously badass fight I can’t wait to see.
Overeem is also becoming increasingly pessimistic about a potential fight with Fedor.
“Fedor doesn’t want to fight,” Overeem said. “His manager doesn’t want to fight. That’s basically the message I’m getting out of all of this. The management said, ‘Yeah, we want to fight Alistair, but first, Alistair must fight somebody else.’ Basically, you need two parties to agree on a fight. Otherwise it’s not going to happen.
“And now, I don’t know what is going to happen because I think [Fedor] might want to leave Strikeforce. I’m not really occupied with the situation; I’m just focused on myself and my training.”