With the exodus of the Strikeforce welterweight champion Nick Diaz to the UFC last year the promotion was left with a hole in the division. Now that Strikeforce and Showtime have a new deal for 2012 the first order of business is to fill the vacant welterweight and light heavyweight champions. To get there though they’ll need to find some number one contenders in each division.
With two welterweight contests on tonight’s Strikeforce: Rockhold vs. Jardine main card the promotion could find themselves two fighters ready to square off for the title later in 2012. Tyrone Woodley vs. Jordan Mein and Tarec Saffiedine vs. Tyler Stinson are the fights and when the dust settles the victorious two will likely be the fight to crown a new Strikeforce Welterweight champion.
Tyron Woodley is undefeated at 9-0 and will be making his eighth appearance inside the Strikeforce cage. A title shot has been talked about with Woodley since he Paul Daley by unanimous decision back in July. The strong wrestler trains out of American Top Team and recently opened up his own gym in St. Louis, ATT Evolution. His opponent will be the MMA veteran Jordan Mein (23-7) who brings a six fight winning streak into the bout. Mein made his Strikeforce debut in September where he defeated Evangelista Santos by third round TKO (elbows).
Tarec Saffiedine is 4-1(11-3 overall) but that one defeat came at the hands of Woodley by unanimous decision back in January. The Team quest fighter holds and black belt in both BJJ and Shihaishinkai (a style of Karate) and holds five wins via submission. Standing across from “the sponge” will be Tyler “The Evolution” Stinson who is coming off a first round knockout of Eduardo Pamplona in his promotional debut back in July. Stinson (22-7) holds 15 wins via (T)KO but has been submitted five times, making this typical striker vs. grappler matchup.
These four gladiators will enter the cage tonight and the two that will have their hands raised could find themselves standing face to face later own this year with a shinny belt going to the winner.
Make sure to watch tonight’s Strikeforce: Rockhold vs. Jardine during the free preview weekend on Showtime and Showtime Extreme, starting at 5pm PT / 8pm ET. Can’t watch live make sure to follow our live results for the next best thing.