A welterweight matchup pitting Evangelista "Cyborg" Santos (18-14 MMA, 1-2 SF) against Tarec Saffiedine (10-3 MMA, 2-1 SF) has been targeted by Strikeforce officials.
A late-July event planned by the California-based promotion is likely to host the matchup, sources close to the event today told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com
However, official confirmation has yet to arrive. Verbal agreements are currently in place for the fight, though.
Santos vs. Saffiedine would bolster a card that possible will be headlined by a heavyweight matchup between Fedor Emelianenko and Dan Henderson, as Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker confirmed this past Saturday following "Strikeforce: Diaz vs. Daley."
Saffiedine hopes to rebound from a decision loss to Tyron Woodley this past January in the headliner of Strikeforce Challengers 13. The fight, in effect, groomed a future contender to the welterweight title. (Woodley is expected to receive one more test before he gets a shot at current welterweight champion Nick Diaz.)
Although Saffiedine gave Woodley a handful in the striking department, he was outgrappled over three rounds and lost the fight on all three judges' scorecards. The setback snapped a three-fight win streak.
Santos had a two-fight win streak snapped in his most recent performance when he vied for Diaz's belt and was submitted in the second round. Despite a punishing attack to Diaz's legs, the Brazilian gave way to a relentless striking attack from the champion and found no reprieve when he took the fight to the mat.
Prior to that, Santos earned an impressive TKO victory over one-time contender Marius Zaromskis.