On the heels of Monday’s announcement that they will host future co-promotions with M-1 Global with the signing of Fedor Emelianenko, Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker announced that they will be forming an alliance with DREAM in Japan.
Coker has been long-time acquaintances with promoter Kazuyoshi Ishii of DREAM, one of Japan’s most popular mixed martial arts organizations, as the two worked together closely for eight years during their K-1 kickboxing days.
“At the beginning of this MMA relationship, we had talked about having Dream fighters come over, and our fighters go over there, and having this relationship,” Coker told MMAWeekly.com. “Well, we all got busy and we never really had the opportunity when they wanted Jake (Shields) to fight over there and when we wanted (Shinya) Aoki, he was scheduled to fight. Now we’re going to be able to put those Dream fights together.”
Coker mentioned that Japanese lightweight sensation Mitsuhiro Ishida is the first in a long line of fighters the two companies will be exchanging.
Ishida, who made his Strikeforce debut last September, will be subbing in for injured lightweight champ Josh Thomson to take on interim title holder Gilbert Melendez at Strikeforce: Carano vs. Cyborg on August 15th.