Strikeforce Vice President Mike Afromowitz confirmed to MMAjunkie.com earlier today that a proposed Strikeforce lightweight title match between incumbent Gilbert Melendez and challenger Jorge Masvidal is no longer on the table.
The bout, first reported by FiveOuncesOfPain.com (www.FiveOuncesOfPain.com) had been discussed as a possible undercard fight for a March 29 event to be co-promoted by Strikeforce and EliteXC that will be headlined by Cung Le vs. Frank Shamrock.
Masvidal sustained a shin injury during last Friday’s “Strikeforce at the Dome” show in Tacoma, Washington. In spite of the injury, Masvidal was still able to record a unanimous decision victory over Ryan Healy.
The news is disappointing on two fronts.
First, this is the second proposed lightweight title match that has been scrapped due to injury. Melendez was originally supposed to face Josh Thomson but the match was unable to move forward after Thomson required shoulder surgery.
Also, another match that was expected to feature middleweights Joey Villasenor and Joe Riggs could be scrapped after Riggs suffered a back injury last Friday vs. Cory Devela.
An official announcement pertaining to Riggs’ status for the March event has not been made, nor has an official announcement been made as to whether Strikeforce is seeking a replacement for Masvidal.