ST. LOUIS (May 19, 2009) SHOWTIME announcer Jimmy Lennon Jr., announced today that top-10 ranked heavyweight and former UFC champion Andrei Arlovski will face unbeaten heavyweight sensation Brett The Grim Rogers on Saturday, June 6 at the Scottrade Center in St. Louis and LIVE on SHOWTIME.
The announcement was made at a kick-off press conference for STRIKEFORCE: Lawler vs. Shields at the Atrium at Scottrade Center. The heavyweight showdown, which will be sponsored by Affliction, will precede the main event fight between two of the most highly regarded fighters in the world, "Ruthless" Robbie Lawler and Jake Shields.
The event will be televised live on SHOWTIME® at 10 p.m. ET/PT (delayed on the West Coast).
Tickets for Strikeforce: Lawler vs. Shields, priced from $30, are on sale now at the Scottrade Center box office as well as at all Ticketmaster locations (800-745-3000), Ticketmaster online (www.ticketmaster.com), and Strikeforces official website (www.strikeforce.com).
Afflictions Arlovskis (15-6) fight resume includes a whos-who of the heavyweight division with fights against Fedor Emelianenko and Tim Sylvia. Eleven of the 15 victories for the former UFC heavyweight champion have come by way of knockout. The undefeated Rogers is 9-0 with eight devastating knockouts and one submission. Only one of his fights has gone past the first round. The two stand-up specialists stand at 6-foot-4, so fans can expect an all-out slugfest.
Lawler, a world top-10 middleweight, is unbeaten in his last six (5-0 with 1 No Contest). Shields, a winner of 11 in a row, is ranked among the top five welterweights in the world. They will clash at a catch weight of 182 pounds.
The rest of the SHOWTIME portion of the June 6 event rounds out as follows:
Fresh off their respective thrilling wins in the premier of Strikeforce on SHOWTIME (April 11), the versatile Nick Diaz and knockout artist Scott Hands of Steel Smith will meet in a special 180-pound showdown.
Diaz, who shocked the MMA world with his complete dominance of four-time world champion Frank Shamrock, has shown tremendous versatility in recent fights, adding top-shelf striking ability to his well-known submission skills. Smith is coming off a stunning, come-from-behind KO of Benji The Razor Radach, in a fight that is sure to be a candidate for 2009 Fight of the Year.
The New York Badass Phil Baroni (13-10) will collide with Joe Diesel Riggs (29-10) in a 170-pound contest. Nine of Baronis 13 wins have come by knockout, so expect the brash, trash talking New Yorker to bang with Riggs. A former UFC contender, Riggs is a well-rounded fighter with 14 wins by knockout and 13 via submission. Their war of words in the press is ongoing. Expect an emotionally charged throw-down in this one.
Opening the SHOWTIME telecast, Kevin The Monster Randleman (17-12) will face Mike Iron Whitehead (23-6) in a 205-pound clash. Randleman, a former UFC standout who has been tested against some of MMAs most recognizable names, will make his return to the cage and his Strikeforce debut. Whitehead is a knockout and submission specialists who has won 14 of his last 15 fights. Whitehead is in for his toughest fight to date.