When the list of Strikeforce fighters headed to the UFC was first made available to the public, the most glaring omission fans noticed from the get-go was easily that of Jorge Masvidal, the former lightweight title challenger who was set to face Pat Healy at Strikeforce’s final event before he was forced to withdraw due to injury. While a couple of fighters had been left off the list because they had already booked fights in the UFC (most notably Tyron Woodley and Bobby Green), fans were left scratching their heads in regards to Masvidal, who had both an open calendar and the kind of skills that could make a big impact in the sport’s highest promotion despite their apparent decision to pass him over.
Well you’ll be happy to know that “Gamebred” has in fact been brought over to the UFC and will be making his promotional debut at the lightweight-heavy UFC on FOX 7 card set for April 20th. Across the cage from Masvidal will be Tim Means, the 18-3 powerhouse who basically summed up the injury curse of 2012 when he was pulled from his UFC on FOX 5 fight with Abel Trujillo at the very last second for being KO’d by a sauna floor (Author’s note: By now, you’re likely attempting to compliment me on the clever wordplay displayed in this article’s title. I can only ask that you hold your applause for a time when my brilliance is less obvious.) Currently 2-0 in the octagon, we last saw Means at UFC on FX 3: Johnson vs. McCall, where he delivered the most painful one minute beating in recent memory to opponent Justin Salas. Expect fireworks in this one, Taters.
Masvidal vs. Means is just one of many intriguing fights that have been booked today. The full list is below.
-Bantamweights Brad Pickett and Mike Easton have agreed to face off in a sure-to-be-slugfest set for the UFC’s return to Sweden. Both men are coming off losses; Easton dropped his first UFC contest via unanimous decision to Raphael Assuncao at UFC on FOX 5 and Pickett a split decision to Eddie Wineland at UFC 155. Featuring a headlining #1 contender fight (or so they say) at light heavyweight between Alexander Gustafsson and promotional newcomer Gegard Mousasi, UFC on FUEL 9 goes down on April 6th from the Ericsson Globe Arena in Stockholm, Sweden.
-Also set for UFC on FOX 7 are a trio of lightweight fights featuring a slew of TUF alums. First on the list is a battle between TUF 13 runner-up Ramsey Nijem — who has scored three straight in the UFC since being knocked out in his season’s finale by Tony Ferguson — and TUF 15′s Myles Jury, who is 2-0 in the octagon and most recently scored an upset UD victory over Michael Johnson at UFC 155. Elsewhere on the card, Roger Bowling, a.k.a the guy who made sure that noted Nazi pedophile Brandon Sailing left Strikeforce on a loss, is set to square off against devastating Nigerian striker Anthony Njokuani. The “Assassin” is in danger of being cut with a loss here, as he is coming off a loss to Rafael Dos Anjos that dropped his record to just 2-3 in the octagon.
And finally, TUF:Smashes lightweight winner Norman Parke will be facing a big test in his sophomore octagon appearance when he takes on undefeated Guamanian Jon Tuck, who is fresh off a debut victory over Tiequan Zhang at the UFC’s inaugural trip to China.