The Other Fight: Arlovski vs. Kharitonov

andrei arlovski The Other Fight: Arlovski vs. KharitonovWith the start of Strikeforce’s Heavyweight Grand Prix Tournament right around the corner (tonight), four of the top heavyweights in the world face off tonight in one of the most stacked cards in Strikeforce history. In what looks to be a great matchup, former PRIDE FC and K-1 star Sergei Kharitonov will face former UFC heavyweight king Andrei Arlovski in a matchup that is getting over looked by the presence of Fedor. The winner of this bout will move on to face the winner of Josh Barnett vs. Brett Rogers.

Kharitonov has boasted an underrated MMA career, with notable wins over Pedro Rizzo, Fabricio Werdum, and Strikeforce champ Alistair Overeem, and with a knockout win over Tatsuya Mizuno in just over a minute at Dynamite!! 2010, he could be carrying the momentum going into this fight. He is a former teammate of Fedor Emelianenko, a fellow Sambo fighter, who met Emelianenko after being invited to Russian Top Team. Since then, Kharitonov went on to the DREAM promotion and also participated in the 2010 K-1 Grand Prix, going 1-1  after being TKO’d by Jaideep.

Arlovski has had a tough road, constantly fighting top ten opponents, and has let himself to a three fight losing streak. Unfortunately, Arlovski doesn’t have it any easier this time around either. Plain and simply, the man deserves respect for stepping up constantly and challenging himself with top flight opponents. His last three opponents have handed him losses, two by knockout at the hands of Brett Rogers and Fedor Emelianenko and a unanimous decision loss to Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva, a fellow competitor in the Grand Prix. Arlovski has picked up and gone to Albuquerque, New Mexico to train with none other than Greg Jackson, where he gets to train with fighters like Jon “Bones” Jones and Rashad Evans. There is no doubt that he’s learned a lot since the move to Jackson’s and will look to showcase what he has learned against Kharitinov.

SergeiKharitonov 200x300 The Other Fight: Arlovski vs. Kharitonov

Kharitonov is 17-4 in MMA

Much can be left up to debate for this fight, both fighters are well-known for their boxing and Sambo skills, but Arlovski’s chin has been deemed unstable due to his recent rash of knockout losses. Perhaps the Antonio Silva fight calmed the talks, as Arlovski ate some big shots from Silva’s giant hands. Kharitonov is coming into the Grand Prix as an underdog but has a very good chance to win the whole tournament with his brilliant skills. It’s a very hard fight to call, you have two of top heavyweights going to battle and this fight seems to come down to who shows up tonight. Arlovski has seemed motivated, and Kharitonov, like Fedor, is hard to read, but never has a dull fight and will bring the fight to Arlovski.

Watch these two tonight at 10PM ET/PT on Showtime, when the Strikeforce World Heavyweight Grand Prix begins.

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