Strikeforce will return home to the HP Pavilion in San Jose, Calif., on Dec. 19, 2009, for its next major event titled, "Evolution," according to promotion officials.
While a headlining bout for the card is still up in the air, Strikeforce Director of Communications, Mike Afromowitz, confirmed an intriguing middleweight battle between 2008 DREAM middleweight grand prix runner-up, Ronaldo "Jacare" Souza (10-2), and 13-year mixed martial arts veteran, Matt "The Law" Lindland (21-6), is set for the main card of the Showtime network event.
Besides his impressive run through the DREAM tournament last year, "Jacare" is probably best known for his rivalry with the flamboyant host of MTV's "Bully Beatdown," Jason "Mayhem" Miller.
The Brazilian defeated "Mayhem" in the quarterfinals of the DREAM tournament in a close decision. After numerous verbal jabs from both men, the pair agreed to a rematch in May of this year to erase any doubt about who is the better fighter. However, the encore also ended in controversy because Souza was unable to continue after an illegal kick from Miller cut him wide open.
It was later ruled a "No Contest."
Then, this summer, both "Jacare" and "Mayhem" signed on with Strikeforce, making a potential third installment of their rivalry on U.S. soil a real possibility. However, Miller got the call to face Jake Shields for the company's title, meaning "Jacare" would have to debut for the promotion against a different opponent.
Apparently Matt "The Law" Lindland was eager to step up to that plate after sitting on the sidelines since a January loss to current UFC number one contender, Vitor Belfort.
Lindland has squared off against a "who's who" of the MMA world throughout his storied career, from Fedor Emelianenko to Pat Miletich to Rampage Jackson. He's also competed under numerous promotional banners, including the UFC, Affliction, IFL, BoDog Fight and others. However, this will be his first appearance for the San Jose-based Strikeforce.
It's an interesting match up of experience vs. youth and wrestling vs. jiu jitsu. "Jacare" certainly has his hands full with a well accomplished Matt Lindland. It's going to be another in a long list of fantastic match ups in 2009 from Strikeforce.
Stay tuned to MMAmania.com for more on this developing fight card.