Strikeforce Challengers is back with their 16th event in the series, taking place live in Kent, WA at the Showare Center. It’s a solid card featuring some local fighters and should be as entertaining a Challengers event as we’ve ever seen. Let’s take a look at the main card and how it breaks down.
Julia Budd vs. Gernaube de Randamie
Germaine de Randamie kickoff the televised portion of the Strikeforce card Friday night. Both fighters are very talented and they should be a tremendous match up. Julia Budd is talented, but Gernaube de Randamie is so dangerous. Her kicks and knees are particularly damaging. Julia Budd and de Randamie both are Muay Thai specialists so you can expect someone to eat a devastating knee at some point. This will be a barnburner.
It would be surprising if this fight made it to the judges, because these two are both happy to stand and trade and you’d think one of them will finish the other. Gernaube de Randamie could be a force at 145 and face Cyborg Santos down the line for a title shot.
Jason High vs. Quinn Mulhern
Jason High and Quinn Mulhern were promoted to the main card this week, and rightfully so because both fighters are worthy of main card status. Quinn is 13-1 and will be stepping up in caliber, leaving King of the Cage for Strikeforce. Jason High has a very respectable 14-3 record with losses coming to solid, known fighters.
Mulhern loves the submission game and Jason has a well-rounded game, but might be better to keep this fight standing and try to hurt Mulhern then take him down and work his ground and pound. It’s a huge fight for both fighters because the winner plants a flag in the Welterweight division.
Lorenz Larkin vs. Gian Villante
Lorenz Larkin will bring his perfect 10-0 record into the cage to meet 7-2 Gian Villante. Larkin impressed in his Strikeforce debut when he battled and finished Scott Lighty. Gian was on the same card, but dropped a fight with Chad Griggs. Both men are heavy handed and want to finish with strikes.
It’s tough to discern who has the advantage here because while Larkin has more strikes to choose from, Gian can finish with a single strike. Whoever lands a telling shot first could win this one. Larking seems like the smarter bet here, and with a win, would skyrocket up the shallow Strikeforce Light Heavyweight division.
Ryan Couture vs. Matt Ricehouse
2-0 Ryan Couture is up next and he’s slated to take on Matt Ricehouse who brings a 4-0 record into the fight. This one is no secret, if Ryan’s last night were Smith, Jones, or anything else, he’d be fighting this weekend in a bingo hall in Iowa somewhere, but he’s famous offspring so he’s in the co-main event of a Strikeforce televised card. This fight isn’t screaming “co main event” but it should be another test for Couture.
Expect to see Ryan submit a game but ultimately outmatched Ricehouse in the second round. After this fight, Ryan Couture needs to defend his spot by facing tougher competition or move down to the undercard and earn his way on the main card like everyone else.
Caros Fodor vs. James Terry
Caros “The Future” Fodor is in need a nickname change. For the talented local MMA star, the “future” is now. I like “Emelianenko” as a new nickname, but that’s just me. Either way, he’ll be facing a tough veteran in 10-2 James Terry. This should be a good fight and a real test for Fodor. James Terry looked solid in his last outing, knocking out Josh Thornburg at Strikeforce Challengers 15. Terry looks to have all the tools to compete at the highest level in Strikeforce, but will need to put away a very game Fodor to move up.
In this fight, you can expect Caros Fodor to be in trouble at some point. James Terry is good to win, and Fodor will have to show he’s able to get himself out of trouble to win this one. It’s a toss-up and should be an incredible fight.
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