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Shooto 'Man vs Woman' fight will happen in Brazil ... just without knees and elbows

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Shooto Brazil announced on that its 45th edition, which is set to take place on Dec. 20, 2013, in Rio de Janeiro, will feature a three-round Bantamweight fight between Emerson Falcao (0-1) and Juliana Velasquez (0-0). Following reports the fight might not happen, the "Man vs. Woman" match is official ... with just one caveat.

Shooto Brazil is having its way. The combat sports promotion has booked a mixed martial arts (MMA) fight between Emerson Falcao (0-1) against Juliana Velasquez (0-0) for this Friday night (Dec. 20, 2013) in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Just to be clear: Falcao is a male, Velasquez is a female.

There were questions about whether the Brazilian Mixed Martial Arts Confederation (BMMAC) -- the entity responsible for regulating the Shooto Brazil events -- would allow the "Male vs. Female" fight to happen. TMZ Sports has learned from a representative that the fight will in fact happen, but with a modified rule set:

No elbows and/or knees of any kind.

Regardless if the combatants are standing or engaging in grappling on the mat, any sort of strike using the elbow or knee will result in the fight being stopped.

Many believe the fight should be stopped before it even starts, including Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) President Dana White, who told TMZ a "Man vs. Woman" scrap would never happen under Zuffa's watch.


Shooto Brazil 45 will be headlined by a Flyweight title fight between Alexandre Pantoja and Lincoln de Sa. Shooto Brazil was in the headlines earlier this year when one of its fighters, Leandro Souza, reportedly died from the negative effects of cutting weight (details).

Stay tuned for more information on this developing story as it becomes available.