Lightweights booked for May 19 event
Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker made the bout announcement Wednesday night on his Twitter account. Strikeforce’s May 19 event is set for the HP Pavilion in its former home base of San Jose, Calif.
The card will feature a main event heavyweight grand prix final between Josh Barnett and Daniel Cormier, plus a lightweight title fight between champion Gilbert Melendez and Josh Thomson – the third meeting between the two veterans. The event will get a live broadcast on Showtime at 10 p.m. Eastern (delayed on the West Coast), and the preliminary card will be broadcast live on Showtime Extreme. The Cavalcante vs. Vallie-Flagg bout is expected to be part of the prelims.
Cavalcante (16-4-1, 2 NC, 1-1, 1 NC Strikeforce) has been out of action since last July, when he picked up his first Strikeforce win with a split decision victory over Bobby Green. Prior to that, the former Hero’s and Dream fighter had a no contest against Justin Wilcox due to an eye poke. His Strikeforce debut came in October 2010, a unanimous decision loss to Thomson. Since 2008, Cavalcante is just 2-3 with a pair of no contests.
Vallie-Flagg (12-3-1, 1-0 Strikeforce) also has been on the sidelines for a fairly long stretch. He last fought in June, making his UFC debut a successful one with a split decision win over Brian Melancon. The Greg Jackson-trained fighter has a 10-fight unbeaten streak with nine wins – six by stopppage – and a no contest.
In addition to the main and co-main events, the card in San Jose will feature fights between former light heavyweight champion Rafael “Feijao” Cavalcante and Mike Pyle, and though it hasn’t been confirmed by the promotion, former UFC standout Nate Marquardt expects to make his Strikeforce debut on the card against Tyron Woodley.