Scott Coker: Winner of Souza vs. Brunson to face Luke RockholdPosted on August 17, 2012, 04:35 PM by Mike Searson
Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker announced yesterday that the winner of Saturday's fight between Middleweights Ronaldo "Jacare" Souza (15-3 MMA, 5-1 SF) and Derek Brunson (9-1 MMA, 3-0 SF) would be next in line for a shot at champion Luke Rockhold (10-1 MMA, 9-0 SF).
Coker said: "Luke Rockhold, our champion, has made it very clear he'd like to fight Jacare. Last time, he won the fight, but he didn't do it in the style and the manner he wanted to do it. This is a tough fight for Jacare, and if he can get through Brunson, that's a fight we would probably would like to make happen. What I like about Jacare the most is he's such a great jiu-jitsu fighter, but he's now become a great standup fighter, too. He's accomplished what I think is very difficult to do, which is become a complete mixed martial arts fighter. He's the benchmark, if you get past this guy, then you definitely have a shot at some point. A lot of people gave Luke no chance to win that fight. I think he rose to the occasion, and Jacare is definitely one of the best fighters in the world. If he can get through Brunson, I think he and Luke will probably have a fight at some point."
Souza welcomes an opportunity to make a run at recapturing his former title: "The proof is there. The last fight he had with me was pretty close, and he feels like he has to do it again. That's proof right there that there are a lot of fighters in Strikeforce ready to fight Rockhold."
Brunson thinks he will provide an upset to those plans, however: "I think we have a really good division at Middleweight in Strikeforce. I think it's one of the best divisions right now. We've got a lot of tough guys right here, so I plan to put a halt to those plans from Luke Rockhold."