June 7, 2006; San Jose, CA….Superstars Vitor Belfort and Alistair Overeem officially touched down in San Jose, California yesterday with their respective camps, for their highly anticipated rematch at Strikeforce “Revenge,” the 10-bout mixed martial arts mega-card that will take place at San Jose’s HP Pavilion on Friday.
After experiencing a 10 hour delay at their point of departure in Sao Paulo, Brazil, Team Belfort arrived in Los Angeles at 2 PM yesterday and caught their connecting flight to San Jose.
Team Overeem, which includes Alistair’s brother and fellow Pride Fighting Championship star, Valentijn, arrived in San Jose early yesterday. Overeem later headed over to the nearby American Kickboxing Academy (AKA) for a training session.
Belfort is scheduled to train with his crew at AKA later today.
During their first encounter at Pride’s “Total Elimination 2005” event a year ago, Belfort and Overeem battled for nine and a half minutes (Note: Pride Fighting Championship schedules the first round of its bouts for 10 minutes) before Overeem secured a guillotine choke on Belfort and forced the Brazilian fighter to tap out.
Another rematch on Friday’s card will see World San Shou kickboxing champion Cung Le face “Mr. Unbreakable” Brian Warren. Le, whose start marks his second career appearance under mixed martial arts rules, defeated Warren by way of unanimous decision in a bout contested under San Shou rules in Las Vegas, Nevada on April 30, 2004.
Strikeforce’s “Revenge” card will also be highlighted by a matchup between undefeated 22-year-old Tyson Griffin and K-1 and UFC veteran, Duane “Bang” Ludwig, as well as a meeting between light heavyweights Bobby Southworth and James Irvin. Southworth introduced himself to the masses during Spike TV’s premiere season of “The Ultimate Fighter” reality series two years ago.
Strikeforce 155 pound champion, Clay Guida, will set out to defend his crown for the first time since he captured the vacant title by persevering over four-time UFC fight winner and Bay Area favorite, Josh “The Punk” Thomson. Thomson will also return to battle and attempt to steer his career back on track.
Former World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) superstar, Daniel Puder, will make his third career mixed martial arts appearance during the event.
Tickets for Strikeforce “Revenge” are on sale at the HP Pavilion box office (408-287-7070) as well as at all Ticketmaster (408-998-TIXS) outlets and Ticketmaster online (www.ticketmaster.com). An arena seating chart can be easily accessed by visiting Strikeforce’s official website, www.strikeforceusa.net, and clicking on the “Tickets” link.
Strikeforce made history twice over on March 10th 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 the HP Pavilion, played host to 18,265 fans, the largest-ever attendance at a mixed martial arts fight card held in North America.
The Strikeforce mixed martial arts event is being produced by Silicon Valley Sports and Entertainment (SVS&E, www.svse.net), a leading producer of major sporting and entertainment events and the exclusive producer of such events for San Jose, California’s largest entertainment venue, HP Pavilion. SVS&E’s many properties include “Fight Night at the Tank” professional boxing; the National Hockey League’s San Jose Sharks; and the annual ATP men’s professional tennis “SAP Open” event.