Strikeforce newcomer Estevan Payan has been tapped to replace the injured Bobby Green in a welterweight bout against Alonzo Martinez on this week's Strikeforce: Rockhold vs. Jardine undercard. Promotion officials confirmed the switch on Wednesday.
A 29-year-old veteran out of Arizona Combat Sports, Payan (12-3, 1 NC) is undefeated in his last six contests, with three first-round stoppages over that period. "El Terrible" was previously a participant in Bellator's inaugural featherweight tourney, where he defeated Luis Palomino before being suffering a semifinal knockout loss to Yahir Reyes.
Martinez (35-15-1), meanwhile, finally lands with Zuffa after a nine-career spent in various regional promotions throughout the country. Known as "Zo-Diddy", the 27-year-old has won eight of his last nine contests, capped by a 20-second victory over Mario Ramos earlier this month. A noted jiu-jitsu specialist, Martinez has notched 21 submission finishes, 16 of which arrived via rear-naked choke.
Strikeforce: Rockhold vs. Jardine takes place January 7th, 2012 at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada. Luke Rockhold defends his Strikeforce middleweight title against Keith Jardine in the night's main event.
Strikeforce: Rockhold vs. Jardine fight card:
Main card (Showtime):
Middleweight Championship: Luke Rockhold vs. Keith Jardine
Light heavyweight: Muhammed Lawal vs. Lorenz Larkin
Middleweight: Robbie Lawler vs. Adlan Amagov
Welterweight: Tyron Woodley vs. Jordan Mein
Welterweight: Tarec Saffiedine vs. Tyler Stinson
Preliminary card (Showtime Extreme):
Welterweight: Nah-Shon Burrell vs. James Terry
Light heavyweight: Trevor Smith vs. Gian Villante
Lightweight: Ricky Legere vs. Chris Spang
Lightweight: Alonzo Martinez vs. Estevan Payan