by Ken Pishna – MMAWeekly.com
Despite weeks of speculation and Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker’s efforts, former WWE superstar Bobby Lashley will not be part of the promotion’s offerings when it returns to CBS on April 17.

Coker told Nick Solomon, reporting for JabsNGrabs.com and MMAWeekly.com, recently that the promotion submitted an opponent for Lashley and was awaiting approval from the Tennessee Athletic Commission.

Lashley, however, on Sunday night posted, and Strikeforce executive Mike Afromowitz confirmed to MMAWeekly.com on Monday, that he would not be competing on the April 17 fight card in Nashville, Tenn.

“Sorry for the delay in responding to all of you who are eager to see me fight again. I will not be on the Strikeforce card in April, but my training is going very well and I’m fully prepared to step into the cage when the time is right,” Lashley wrote on facebook. “I will let you know as soon as my next fight is set!”

It’s still not clear when and who Lashley will fight next, but there should be ample opportunities in the next couple months. Strikeforce already announced a May 15 date for its return to St. Louis, Mo., and there is strong information that it will run another event in June, possibly in Los Angeles.

Strikeforce’s return to CBS on April 17 features three title fights. Middleweight champion Jake Shields defends against former Pride champion Dan Henderson, light heavyweight titleholder Gegard Mousasi faces Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal, and Gilbert Melendez puts up his Strikeforce lightweight title against Dream champion Shinya Aoki.