Fedor Emelianenko To Face Fabricio Werdum In MayA Strikeforce bout between WAMMA Unified Heavyweight Champion “The Last Emperor” Fedor Emelianenko and Fabricio Werdum has been pushed back until May. The fight was originally planned for an April Strikeforce card on CBS, but M-1 officials stated today that that will no longer take place.

MMAFighting.com was first to report on the change of date, which could result in many changes to the upcoming Strikeforce schedule. Reports have suggested that Emelianenko’s bouts must air on CBS, which could force Strikeforce to delay their next CBS event until May.

While details are still limited, a tentative plan is in place for Strikeforce to showcase a Middleweight Championship bout between Jake Shields and Dan “Hendo” Henderson in April. The event is said to be targeted for April 17th at the newly-renamed Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Tennessee. Original plans called for an April return to CBS for Strikeforce, but with Emelianenko no longer participating until May, the promotion may air its April event on Showtime instead.

Should this occur, a problem may arise with Henderson, as he departed the UFC and signed with Strikeforce based on the added exposure that is available on primetime CBS network television. If his title bout with Shields remains on the April card, Henderson may find himself relegated to Showtime; a pay channel which is available to a mere fraction of the audience that CBS commands.

A similar situation would apply to other rumoured participants on the April card, including Strikeforce Light Heavyweight Champion Gegard “The Dreamcatcher” Mousasi, Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal and pro wrestling star Bobby “The Dominator” Lashley. Mousasi and Lawal would likely compete in the co-main event in a bout for Mousasi’s 205-pound title.

Emelianenko (31-1-0, 1 NC) and Werdum (13-4-1) are expected to clash to determine a number one contender for Strikeforce Heavyweight Champion Alistair “Demolition Man” Overeem’s crown. Overeem (32-11-0, 1 NC) has not competed for Strikeforce since winning the title in November of 2007, but he has reigned undefeated in seven bouts overseas in Europe and Japan. He, too, is rumoured to be making his Strikeforce return in May.

With many things in the works, few definitive plans have been set at this point and many questions remain. Strikeforce Director of Communications Mike Afromowitz has stated that the promotion is looking to have a solid plan in place by the end of this week.


(Photo Credit: Sherdog.com)

  1. Either way, I love all those fights & fighters. No matter what happens, April & May will be awsome.