Former Maximum Fighting Championship welterweight titleholder Pat Healy (27-17) has been tapped as a replacement for the spot vacated by Josh Thomson on the main card of Strikeforce's upcoming Heavyweight Grand Prix Semi-Finals. He is scheduled to face Maximo Blanco (8-2-1) in a primetime lightweight showdown. The news was first reported by MMAJunkie.com, and confirmed by Strikeforce officials early Tuesday morning.
A UFC and WEC veteran, Healy has served as a journeyman for much of his eleven-year career, notching notable wins over past and present UFC contenders Dan Hardy, Paul Daley, and Carlos Condit. The 28-year-old Team Quest fighter has been on a roll of late, winning five of his last six bouts, including three of four under the Strikeforce banner. He last defeated Eric Wisely via unanimous decision at August's ‘Strikeforce Challengers' event.
Strikeforce Heavyweight World Grand Prix: Barnett vs. Kharitonov is set for September 10th at Cincinnati's U.S. Bank Arena. The card is headlined by two heavyweight grand prix semi-final bouts, Josh Barnett vs. Sergei Kharitonov and Antonio Silva vs. Daniel Cormier.
Updated Strikeforce: Heavyweight Grand Prix Semi-Finals fight card:
Main card (aired on Showtime):
Heavyweight Grand Prix Semifinal: Josh Barnett vs. Sergei Kharitonov
Heavyweight Grand Prix Semifinal: Antonio Silva vs. Daniel Cormier
Middleweight Championship: Ronaldo Souza vs. Luke Rockhold
Light Heavyweight: Muhammed Lawal vs. Roger Gracie
Lightweight: Josh Thomson vs. Maximo Blanco
Preliminary card (aired on HDNet):
Welterweight: Evangelista Santos vs. Jordan Mein
Light Heavyweight: Mike Kyle vs. Marcos Rogerio de Lima
Light Heavyweight: Rafael Cavalcante vs. Yoel Romero Palacio
Women's Bantamweight: Alexis Davis vs. Amanda Nunes