Now in his Strikeforce and welterweight debut Nate “The Great” Marquardt will take on undefeated Tyron Woodley for the vacant Strikeforce Welterweight Title. Despite the layoff, Marquardt said he’s still ready to fight, “It’s funny because everyone thought I was a big middleweight, but I was actually a small middleweight.” He added the move to welterweight was just a matter of keeping muscle mass off and making 170’s “not a problem.”
For Tyron Woodley, who’s taken criticism for his wrestling style that works to outpoint opponents and not finish them, Woodley said that’s not the case. “My goal is obviously to exploit weaknesses and find gaps and openings. Anytime my opponent has a weakness I found a way to figure it out…I’m always trying to wait to exploit that.” He added, “You got to find a way to get the victory and try to do damage. At the end of the day it’s about imposing your will on your opponent.”
Strikeforce Middleweight Champ Luke Rockhold will look to defend his title for the second time, the first was against Keith Jardine. While he says that there’s no added pressure, Tim Kennedy definitely presents Rockhold’s toughest challenge to date. The two were slated to fight once before and Kennedy said what kept him out was an injury to his big toe on his left foot that he had to have reattached. Surgery was successful and the two will battle it for the middleweight title out in Portland, Oregon on Saturday, July 14th.
Rockhold said of his challenger, “If you come for my belt, I’m going to punish you.” He also added that he’s looking for a fight from Kennedy and not another Greg Jackson game plan. To that Kennedy answered, people are criticizing Clay for his performance, but no one says anything about Cub Swanson’s big KO.
For the full conference call, listen here!
Strikeforce Media Call: Rockhold v Kennedy
Recorded LIVE June 26, 2012
With Scott Coker, Luke Rockhold, Tim Kennedy, Tyron Woodley & Nate Marquardt"