NEW YORK (Sept. 22, 2010) – A matchup of welterweight prospects, Tyron Woodley (8-0), of St. Louis, Mo., and Andre Galvao (5-1) of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, will replace the fight between Luke Rockhold and Matt “The Law” Lindland on STRIKEFORCE: Diaz vs. Noons II on Saturday, Oct. 9, at HP Pavilion in San Jose, Calif., live on SHOWTIME® (10 p.m. ET/PT, delayed on the West Coast).
The middleweight bout between Rockhold and Lindland was called off after Rockhold sustained a shoulder injury last Saturday while training at American Kickboxing Academy (AKA) in San Jose. The extent of the injury is not yet known.
“The fight between Tyron and Andre is a great matchup between two young fighters looking to take their careers to the next level,” said STRIKEFORCE CEO Scott Coker. “We wish Luke a speedy recovery and are confident he will soon enough rejoin our growing crop of top prospects.”
Woodley and Galvao are two of MMA’s fastest-rising 170-pounders and both possess the talent, ability and dedication to one day fight for a world title. The highly touted fighters will be making their respective televised debuts on a STRIKEFORCE championship series fight card on SHOWTIME after having appeared on STRIKEFORCE Challengers.
The unbeaten 5-foot-9, 28-year-old Woodley of St. Louis, Mo., is a two-time All-American NCAA wrestler for the University of Missouri. He fought three times on the Challengers series, winning his last on a hard-fought split decision over Nathan Coy in his first start of the year on May 21 in Portland, Ore. Woodley triumphed by submission in both his 2009 outings on STRIKEFORCE Challengers, finishing Rudy Bears with an arm-triangle choke and Zach Light with an arm-bar on Nov. 20 and Sept. 25, respectively.
Woodley, who turned pro in February 2006, is a member of American Top Team. He won his initial start for STRIKEFORCE with a first-round submission (Brabo Choke) over Sal Woods in a non-televised, undercard bout on June 6, 2009, in St. Louis.
Galvao, a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu specialist, is coming off a third-round TKO (punches) over Jorge Patino in an undercard bout last Aug. 21 at STRIKEFORCE: Houston. In his fight before last, he triumphed via controversial split-decision over Luke Stewart during a STRIKEFORCE Challengers event last March 26 in Fresno, Calif.
The 5-foot-7 Galvao, who turns 28 on Sept. 29, is 2-0 in 2010. His only defeat came on a split decision to Jason High in the DREAM Welterweight Grand Prix on July 20, 2009. Before going pro in August 2008, Galvao earned countless Jiu-Jitsu titles in international competition for Brazil, including a gold medal at the World Championships in ’08.
The postponement is a setback for Rockhold, an up-and-coming middleweight on a six-fight winning streak.
“There’s not much I can do. Injuries are part of the game,” Rockhold said. ‘But I feel bad for Matt, the fans, STRIKEFORCE, everybody. I’d been working really hard and was really focused on this fight. Hopefully, I will be OK soon and Matt and I can get it on in the future.”
In the Oct. 9 main event, STRIKEFORCE World Welterweight (170 pounds) Champion Nick Diaz (22-7, 1 NC) will defend against KJ Noons (9-1) in an eagerly awaited grudge rematch. STRIKEFORCE Women’s Welterweight World Champion Sarah Kaufman (12-0) will risk her 135-pound belt a second time when she faces No. 1 contender Marloes Coenen (17-4) in the co-feature
A third fight on SHOWTIME will match former STRIKEFORCE belt-holder Josh Thomson (17-3) against Gesias “JZ” Cavalcante (15-3-1) in a battle of world-ranked lightweights.
Tickets are on sale at Ticketmaster.com , at the HP Pavilion ticket office, or by phone at (800) 745-3000. Doors will open at 4 p.m. PT. The first live, non-televised fight is at 4:30 p.m.
STRIKEFORCE (www.strikeforce.com ) is a world-class mixed martial arts cage fight promotion which, on Friday, March 10, 2006, made history with its “Shamrock vs. Gracie” event, the first sanctioned mixed martial arts fight card in California state history. The star-studded extravaganza, which pitted legendary champion Frank Shamrock against Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt Cesar Gracie at San Jose’s HP Pavilion, played host to a sold-out, record crowd of 18,265. Since 1995, STRIKEFORCE, sanctioned by ISKA, has been the exclusive provider of martial arts programming for ESPN and, after 12 years of success as a leading, world championship kickboxing promotion, the company unveiled its mixed martial arts (MMA) series with “Shamrock vs. Gracie.” In May 2008, West Coast Productions, the parent company of STRIKEFORCE, partnered with Silicon Valley Sports & Entertainment (SVS&E), an entity created in 2000 to oversee all business operation aspects of the San Jose Sharks and HP Pavilion at San Jose. In March 2009, STRIKEFORCE signed a multi-year agreement with SHOWTIME® to stage live events on the premium cable television network. The promotion has since also produced two live, primetime events on the CBS Television Network.