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Wednesday, Mar 02, 2011

Diaz vs. Daley, Melendez vs. Kawajiri Set for April 9th

By FCF Staff
After announcing that its heavyweight grand-prix would not continue until June 18th, Strikeforce has confirmed two title fights for the April 9th date instead, as welterweight champion Nick Diaz will face Paul Daley and lightweight champion Gilbert Melendez will fight Tatsuya Kawajiri. (Pictured: Diaz punching Evangelista Santos)
The April 9th card will be hosted by the 16,000 seat Valley View Casino Center in San Diego, California, and will be broadcast on Showtime.
“We 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,” Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker was quoted saying. “This is a fight everyone has been waiting for and I’d like to thank Dream for allowing Tatsuya to come to the U.S. to take on our Lightweight World Champion.”
Diaz (24-7) is coming off a successful title defence on January 29th, as the veteran fighter tapped out Evangelista “Cyborg” Santos with a second round armbar. Daley (27-9-2) entrenched his shot at Diaz this past weekend in England, as he KO’d Yuya Shirai in the first round at BAMMA 5.
Melendez (18-2) hasn’t fought since last April, when he worked his way to a unanimous decision victory over Dream lightweight champ Shinya Aoki. Kawajiri (27-6-2) competed last on New Year’s Eve, and scored an impressive, UD victory over former Strikeforce champ Josh Thomson.
In addition to the title fights, Strikeforce has announced that former light-heavyweight champ Gegard Mousasi (30-3-1) will take on Mike Kyle (18-8-1) at the April 9th event.
posted by Full Contact Fighter @ 2:44 pm
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