Maximo Blanco is ready to make his Strikeforce debut. He’ll get the opportunity when he faces a former champion.
The former Sengoku fighter will face former Strikeforce lightweight champion Josh Thomson in his first bout with the promotion.
The news was confirmed to MMAWeekly.com by sources close to the match-up, stating bout agreements have been issued and signed for the fight expected to take place on an as yet unannounced Sept. 10 Strikeforce event.
This is the first fight confirmed for the next major Strikeforce show, but no location has been confirmed for the card.
Thomson (18-4) returns to Strikeforce after a lengthy layoff from his last fight when he traveled to Japan on short notice to face Tatsuya Kawajiri at the New Year’s Eve show Dynamite!! Thomson lost the fight, and then had to deal with an injured hand, which has kept him on the sideline for the past few months.
Now he will return and face a very stiff challenge from former Sengoku lightweight Maximo Blanco (8-2-1).
Blanco recently signed with Strikeforce after a successful career in the Japanese promotion where he won his last six fights in a row, five of them by KO or TKO.
“I would like to fight Josh Thomson,” Blanco told MMAWeekly.com last month when asked what fights most intrigued him out of the U.S. promotions. Now he gets his wish.
The two lightweights will battle in September in a key lightweight match-up as Strikeforce continues to build contenders with champion Gilbert Melendez perched at the top of the division.
More fights are expected to be announced for the Sept. 10 show in the coming weeks, as well as a confirmation on the show’s location.