(Lawler vs. Prangley was one of two fights removed from the card in the last week.)
Strikeforce’s last show of its breakthrough 2009 closed out the year back at its home base of San Jose, Calif. – below you’ll find results for each fight, a recap of our FIGHT! Picks and how we fared as well as attendance numbers. Check back later today for additional coverage and photo galleries.
Alex Crispim def. AJ Fonseca by unanimious decision (30-27 on all score cards) in a featherweight contest. Crispim improves to 4-2, while Fonseca drops to 4-2.
Justin Wilcox def. Daisuke Nakamura by unanimous decision in a lightweight contest (30-27, 29-28, 30-27) . Wilcox improves to (8-3), while Nakamura drops to 20-12.
Antwain Britt def. Scott Lighty by TKO (doctor stoppage) in a light heavyweight contest at 5:00 of round one. Britt improves to 9-3, while Lighty drops to 5-1.
Muhammed Lawal def. Mike Whitehead by KO at 3:08 of the first round in a heavyweight contest. “King Mo” improves to 6-0, while Whitehead drops to 24-5. Lawal, successful in his Strikeforce debut, is the first person to KO Whitehead and only the third person to stop him in 29 fights.
FIGHT! Pick: Lawal. This fight went as we expected it to.
Ronaldo Souza def. Matt Lindland by arm-triangle choke at 4:18 of the first round in a middleweight contest. “Jacare” improves to 11-2, while Lindland drops to 21-7. The Brazilian ADCC champion makes a succesful debut as Lindland finds himself winless in two bouts in 2009.
FIGHT! Pick: Jacare. Again, no surprises here.
Gilbert Melendez def. Josh Thomson by unanimous decision (49-47, 49-46, 49-46) in a lightweight contest, capturing the Strikeforce Lightweight Championship. Melendez, who has now avenged both of his losses, improves to 17-2, while Thomson drops to 16-3.
FIGHT! Pick: Melendez, en route to a trilogy.. Can’t wait for the third tilt.
Scott Smith def. Cung Le by TKO at 3:25 in a middleweight contest. Smith to improves to 18-6, while Le drops to 6-1.
FIGHT! Pick: Le. We should have been more wary of Smith’s power.
The official attendance for Strikeforce: Evolution at the HP Pavilion was 9,362.
Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker confirmed to FIGHT! Magazine the San Jose-based promotion expects to run three hometown shows out of 20 in 2010.
Dan Henderson, Chuck Liddell, Roger Gracie, Bobby Lashley, K.J. Noons, Cristiane “Cyborg” Santos, Robbie Lawler, Jake Shields, Nick Diaz, Herschel Walker and Brett Rogers were in attendance.
Strikeforce gave fans in attendance a survey, and if elgible, a grand prize of $1,000 will be awarded to the winner before Christmas.
David “Tarzan” Douglas was slated to take face Bobby Stack as of yesterday before the bout was scrapped off the card– an undisclosed medical issue was caught post-weigh-in.
Daisuke Nakamura sported black trunks a la Dan Severn.
According to Scott Coker, two title fights are set for Strikeforce Miami on January 30. Nick Diaz vs. Mariusz Zaromskis will square off for the welterweight strap, and Cristiane “Cyborg” Santos will defend her title against Marloes Coenen.