by Damon Martin – MMAWeekly.com
As Strikeforce sits just days away from its official debut on Showtime, the title picture in the promotion is starting to come clear with recent bouts announced, and more championship bouts coming in the near future.
One title that has not been discussed much yet is the heavyweight belt, which currently belongs to powerful striker Alistair Overeem. He won the belt in late 2007 with a TKO over Paul Buentello.
Overeem has recently been spending most of his time fighting in Japan, while also participating in K-1 kickboxing bouts. With Strikeforce putting on several shows over the next few months, including fights on CBS later this year, the Strikeforce heavyweight division will likely see its champion return to defend his title.
As Strikeforce executive Mike Afromowitz told MMAWeekly Radio recently, they believe Overeem will head back to the United States to defend his belt this year.
“We’re looking to get him back pretty soon. I’d say more likely than not, you’re going to see him defend his title this year,” Afromowitz said about Overeem.
The Dutch fighter had been courted by a number of organizations over the last few months, including the UFC, which featured Overeem backstage during one of president Dana White’s video blogs a few months ago.
It appears that while Overeem will continue to fulfill his time with K-1 and Dream, he will also head back to Strikeforce to put his belt up for grabs in 2009.
A growing list of contenders will likely vie for the shot to get at Overeem, including a pivotal match-up during the Showtime debut on April 11, when Brett Rogers returns to action to face Ron “Abongo” Humphrey.