Strikeforce tournament bracket unveiled
By Josh Gross
Updated: January 4, 2011, 10:05 PM ET
Following months of speculation, Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker's desire to promote a single-elimination heavyweight tournament in 2011 has come to fruition. Showtime, which expects to televise each of the event's three legs, revealed opening-round matches and the tournament bracket Tuesday.
"It's a long, grueling process as we know with these tournaments, and whoever comes out on top will be the reigning Strikeforce heavyweight champion," said Ken Hershman, executive vice president and general manager of Showtime Sports.
Beginning Feb. 12 at the IZOD Center in East Rutherford, N.J., four of the eight fighters signed up for the main draw will compete in first-round matchups.
Fedor Emelianenko (31-2) fights Antonio Silva (15-2) and Andrei Arlovski (15-8) is matched against Sergei Kharitonov (16-4).
The remaining quarterfinal fights will likely take place in April, Showtime and Strikeforce officials said. The event's date and location are yet to be determined. Current Strikeforce heavyweight champion Alistair Overeem (33-11) will meet Fabricio Werdum (14-4-1), and Brett Rogers (11-2) tangles with Josh Barnett (29-5).(Cont.)