STRIKEFORCE “FOUR MEN ENTER, ONE MAN SURVIVES”
IN SAN JOSE NOV 16TH
October 17, 2007; San Jose, CA….Mixed martial arts star Falaniko “Niko” Vitale (24-7) and has been the first combatant selected to throw down in a four-man, single-elimination middleweight (185 lb. limit) tournament that will headline Strikeforce’s highly-anticipated return to San Jose, California’s HP Pavilion on Friday, November 16th. The winner of the first-ever sanctioned mixed martial arts tournament in the state of California, which will be completed over the course of the 10-bout fight card, will potentially be awarded the opportunity to challenge Strikeforce World Middleweight Champion, Frank Shamrock.
Tickets for the Strikeforce event, which will be presented by BodogFIGHT, are on sale at Ticketmaster (408-998-TIXS) and Ticketmaster online (www.ticketmaster.com) as well as at the HP Pavilion box office (408-287-7070). Ticket prices range from $30 to $300.
“We’re very grateful that the athletic commission has given us the opportunity to produce a tournament format fight for our fans,” said Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker. “This will be the first step in our efforts to produce more tournaments which, historically, have been a great way to challenge world class athletes and to determine who the best competitor is on any given day.”
The 33-year-old Vitale, a native of Honolulu, Hawaii, is coming a sensational first round victory over Ron “Killing” Fields, a matchup which unfolded during Strikeforce’s history making event at the world-famous Playboy Mansion in Beverly Hills on Saturday, September 29th. From top position on the canvas, Vitale rained down on Fields with a series of blows before a stoppage was ordered at the 3:02 mark of the bout’s opening round.
Before entering the ranks of Strikeforce, Vitale made a number of notable conquests that have earned him prominent status in the world’s fastest growing sport. On June 6, 2003, he stopped superstar Matt Lindland in the first stanza of their meeting and, on February 7th of the following year, he earned a unanimous decision over former UFC middleweight champion, Dave Menne.
HP Pavilion doors will open for Strikeforce “Four Men Enter, One Man Survives” at 5:30 PM PST on Friday, November 16th. The first preliminary bout will begin at 6 PM and the first tournament bout will commence at 7:30 PM.
Strikeforce 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 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 series with “Shamrock vs. Gracie.” Since then, it has produced the first SHOWTIME PPV mixed martial arts event in history with its world championship “Shamrock vs. Baroni” card on June 22nd of this year followed by the first-ever mixed martial arts event at the world-famous Playboy Mansion on September 29th.