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Tim Kennedy’s Opponent Switched Again, Will Now Face Melvin Manhoef in Columbus

(Melvin Manhoef highlight reel, via StillW1ll)

After his decision loss to Ronaldo "Jacare" Souza in August, Strikeforce middleweight contender Tim Kennedy has had quite an adventure finding his next opponent. First, everybody in the world was ducking him. Then, he was slated to have a tie-breaker match with Jason "Mayhem" Miller. Then, Strikeforce decided to nix that idea and put Kennedy up against exciting prospect Luke Rockhold, who has been inactive for a year due to a shoulder injury. Well, that’s off now too. Due to a reported leg injury suffered in training, Rockhold has been forced to withdraw from his meeting with Kennedy at Strikeforce: Feijao vs. Henderson (March 5th; Columbus, OH). Replacing him? None other than balls-to-the-wall striker Melvin Manhoef.

Manhoef has one of the most impressive finishing percentages in MMA, with 23 of his 24 career victories coming by way of KO/TKO. However, he’s lost four of his last six fights — three by way of submission, and one by Hail Mary KO at the hands of Robbie Lawler. Manhoef last competed at Dream.15 in July, when he lost to Tatsuya Mizuno by kimura. Kennedy’s keys to victory are very simple: Slow the pace down, check (or dodge) Melvin’s brutal leg kicks, and get the fight to the ground as soon as possible. Let’s hope this is the last opponent swap for Kennedy, because we’re actually kind of psyched to see this one go down.

Cagepotato Comments

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CNOA0406- February 4, 2011 at 12:13 pm
You can probably blame all of these problems on the Strikeforce matchmaker Crazy Bob.... It would not be the first of his shady deals to get one of his fighters in. Mayhem is a true fighter and would never duck a fight. My guess, never offered to Mayhem so the Crazy one could sub Rockhold. Pretty much a conflict of interest if you ask anyone.

This is a great fight. The winner should get the shot at Jacare. Kennedy took Jacare the distance and a close decision.

Melvins a true BEAST, and this fight has the makings of big fireworks. A great fight for the fan and a true MMA fight.

Looks like a great Strikeforce Card.
They still need to solve there conflict issue.
ghostboner- February 4, 2011 at 12:00 pm
I still poo my pants everytime I think about that Lawler fight.

So in the still of that video the canvas right under Melvin's feet appears to say black on black, but the dude Melvin just wrecked only looks light brown. Rampage and Rashard would not approve of this false marketing.
kickthriller- February 4, 2011 at 11:46 am
Wow! Finally! Go Melvin! Go!
Melvins striking is brutal. I love watching him strike so viciously and fight after fight i keep on hoping he develops his ground game, cause everyone knows, you beat melvin buy submitting him. Most of his losses are due to submissions and its like he never learns, doesnt care about his future and or hes with a camp that doesnt care if he wins. Personally i love watching him fight but i hate seeing talent like this go down the tubes.
Imagine a guy like this, that could defend submissions????? or even apply them???? He'd be in the UFC a long time ago with less loses lol!!!!!
Go Melvin!!!!!!
Lysol- February 4, 2011 at 11:22 am
So much for "fuck no!", huh Tim?
Crusader86- February 4, 2011 at 10:07 am
Awesome. Manhoef is a beast and I can't wait to see him fight again.

His fight with Lawlor was fucking bananas.
The Fresh One- February 4, 2011 at 8:35 am
I wish the UFC would go after Melvin. Imagine him vs Silva, Vitor, Bisping, Wand, Belcher, Leben, Stann, etc. He'd do well in this striker-heavy division.
kellyman- February 4, 2011 at 8:33 am
Smitty, you're thinking of Dan Quinn, better known as Pruneface from that Dick Tracy movie.
Dog Dicks Magoo- February 4, 2011 at 8:20 am
Manhoef will eat his soul until he gets arm barred that is.
skeletor- February 4, 2011 at 7:20 am
This fight is exciting, but does anyone know why they scrapped Kennedy and Miller to begin with? That fight made a hell of allot more sense to the SF middleweight division.
Sniffer-Piffits- February 4, 2011 at 7:17 am
Don't know much about Kennedy, but MElvin is a freak standing up! Ko'd Mark Hunt? Say what you want about Hunt but his head is solid rock and Melvin Crushed his universe.
FlashinLeather- February 4, 2011 at 7:03 am
sickkkkk, so much better then the rockhold fight
Smitty- February 4, 2011 at 6:48 am
Hellz yeah! This should be a good one, unless they change it again next week. If they do, I hope they give him, the middleweight kingpin, basement lurking, king of stevia, whats his name again..............the crazy dude..............I'm drawin a blank.