The first bout on tonight's Strikeforce: Fedor vs. Silva event features a heavyweight tilt that's a tournament reserve bout for the Strikeforce heavyweight tournament between two combat sports veterans. Ray Sefo vs. Valentijn Overeem pits a kickboxing legend against the brother of a current kickboxing great.
Ray Sefo is a multiple-time world muay Thai champion who has barely dipped his toes in mixed martial arts. He currently trains with Randy Couture at Xtreme Couture in Las Vegas, Nevada. He has two bouts in MMA, both wins, but both were not against top competition. Sefo is renowned for having an excellent chin, heavy punches, but slow movement and virtually no ground game.
Valentijn Overeem, the older brother of Alistair Overeem, has a long history in MMA essentially as a middler. He wins just a few more than he loses. His top win was over a very green Randy Couture in the 2000 RINGS tournament. Since then he's been inconsistent at best, fighting irregularly and losing regularly.
In terms of physical dimensions, Overeem is 34 years old, 6 feet 3 inches tall and weighed in yesterday at 239 pounds. Sefo, by contrast, is 39 years old, 6 feet tall and weighed in yesterday at 249 pounds.
Overeem enters this bout with an historic win over Randy Couture, although that seems like a lifetime ago. His last three fights are as follows: W Cătălin Zmărăndescu (KO), W Tengiz Tedoradze (KO), L Rafal Dabrowski (SUB). Sefo: W Kevin Jordan (TKO), W Min-Soo Kim (KO)
The Jordan win for Sefo is respectable, but will hardly prepare him for the deeper waters of the true contenders in Strikeforce's tournament. Overeem should be able to take Sefo down and either submit him or TKO him from on top. But he's got such a propensity to lose focus during the course of the fight, anything could happen.