Strikeforce on Tuesday made its March 3 event for Columbus, Ohio, official. Strikeforce: Tate vs. Rousey takes place at the Nationwide Arena the same weekend as the Arnold Sports Festival.
The card was originally expected to feature the Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix final between Josh Barnett and Daniel Cormier, but a women’s bantamweight title tilt between champion Miesha Tate and challenger Ronda Rousey will now headline the card.
The Tate-Rousey bout is the most anticipated women’s fight since Cris “Cyborg” Santos and Gina Carano in 2009.
Tate (12-2) is the more experienced fighter, having faced nearly all the top competitor’s in the 135-pound division. She fought her way through a four-woman tournament before capturing the title from Marloes Coenen last July.
She wanted her first defense to be against Sarah Kaufman, one of only two fighters to defeat her, so that she might avenge the loss, but Rousey has been on fire, streaking into contendership.
Rousey (4-0) is an Olympic bronze medalist in Judo from the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, but has fought like a Gold medalist in her mixed martial arts career. Combining her amateur MMA career with her professional resume, Rousey has fought seven times, submitting every single opponent by armbar. More remarkably, however, is that each victory has clocked in at less than one minute.
The two headline a Strikeforce fight card that also features Paul Daley vs. Kazuo Misaki in a welterweight showdown, Josh Thomson vs. KJ Noons at lightweight, and Sarah Kaufman vs. Alexis Davis in a bantamweight bout that will likely determine the next contender to whoever wins between Tate and Rousey.
Tickets for Strikeforce: Tate vs. Rousey go on sale to UFC Fight Club members on Wednesday, Strikeforce newsletter subscribers on Thursday, and the general public on Friday.