34-year-old Cuban wrestler Yoel Romero will be making his Strikeforce debut this weekend against former Strikeforce light heavyweight champion Rafael “Feijao” Cavalcante.
The Olympic silver medalist has gone undefeated in his four professional fights, finishing all four via KO or TKO, but is still a ways off from matching Cavalcante’s 10-3 pro record, which includes fights against Mike Kyle, Muhammed Lawal and Dan Henderson. Despite the fact that Romero comes in against Cavalcante unheralded, Feijao told MMAFighting.com’s Ariel Helwani during his recent visit to the X Gym in Brazil that he will not be underestimating his opponent in the least.
“I know he’s a very good wrestler. He’s an elite wrestler. I don’t know why, I always fight with wrestlers, man,” Cavalcante said with a laugh. “I keep my game plan, I’m training a lot with my conditioning coach, with my training partners. I don’t care if it’s his first fight in Strikeforce or not. I always train for the worst thing. I train with the best in the world. In MMA it’s like *snaps* that, you know? I never underestimate anyone.”
A member of the famed Black House camp with Anderson Silva, the Nogueira brothers, Jose Aldo, Lyoto Machida and more, Cavalcante most recently appeared in action giving up the light heavyweight strap he earned with a TKO over King Mo to MMA veteran Dan Henderson. The bout was back and forth, with Cavalcante enjoying several moments of success before succumbing, like so many of Hendo’s opponents, to his rocket-fueled right hand. That TKO defeat took place this past March.
Cavalcante and Romero will meet at Strikeforce 36 this weekend at the US Bank Arena in Cincinnati, Ohio. Don’t forget to check back on FightLine.com Saturday night for our live, ongoing coverage of the event.