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Strikeforce announces Gilbert Melendez vs Josh Thomson 2 for 'Evolution' on Dec. 19


Strikeforce today officially announced the headlining bout for their upcoming "Evolution" event as Lightweight Champion Josh Thomson (16-2, 1 NC) will return to action to battle the promotion's interim 155-pound kingpin, Gilbert Melendez (16-2), at the HP Pavilion in San Jose, Calif., on Dec. 19.

As first reported last week, this will be a much anticipated rematch of their June 2008 championship fight in which Thomson dethroned Melendez and usurped the belt after recording a five round unanimous decision victory.

It was actually supposed to go down much sooner on the "Shamrock vs. Diaz" card in April 2009; however, Thomson was forced to withdraw because of a serious leg injury while training for the bout. As a result, Melendez was paired with Rodrigo Damm to determine the interim lightweight champion, which "El Nino" won via second round technical knockout.

The rematch was then again rescheduled for the "Carano vs. Cyborg" card in August 2009, but again, Thomson had to withdraw because of re-aggravating the same injury. Melendez put his interim belt on the line against Mitsuhiro Ishida instead, winning via third round technical knockout.

Hopefully, the third time will be the charm as these two are now officially set to go toe-to-toe on the main card on December 19, nearly a year and half since their original meeting. The event will broadcast live on Showtime on fight night, beginning at 10 p.m. ET.

To check out the latest fight card and rumors for "Evolution" click here.

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