Strikeforce's Strikeforce Nov. 3 bill continues to develop, as Tim Kennedy now meets Trevor Smith in a middleweight contest at the Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City.
Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker announced the news Thursday afternoon via Twitter. The Zuffa-owned promotion's Nov. 3 offering airs on Showtime and was supposed to be headlined by a heavyweight showdown between Daniel Cormier and Frank Mir prior to Mir withdrawing from the bout due to injury. Cormier will stay on the card, according to promotion officials, who are currently securing a replacement opponent for the American Kickboxing Academy standout.
The show will also see another AKA product in Luke Rockhold defend his middleweight title against former light heavyweight Lorenz Larkin. Additionally, top female talents Liz Carmouche and Sara McMann will clash in a 135-pound affair.
Kennedy has tried twice in vain to capture Strikeforce's 185-pound crown, first competing with Ronaldo Souza for the vacant title in 2010 and then challenging new champion Luke Rockhold this past July. Despite suffering those two championship losses, Kennedy, 33, has won six of his last eight bouts. The former U.S. Army Green Beret owns 12 of his 14 career wins by either knockout or submission and holds notable victories over Robbie Lawler, Jason Miller and Melvin Manoef, among others.
Beaten just twice in 12 pro outings, Smith has won six of his last seven fights, with his lone loss in that span coming via technical knockout to former heavyweight Gian Villante. Previously competing at 205 pounds, Smith made the cut to middleweight on June 16, submitting Alexandre Moreno with a guillotine choke under the Battle Xtreme Championship banner. The win marked the ninth career submission victory for “Hot Sauce,” who earned back-to-back wins over Keith Berry and T.J. Cook to start his Strikeforce career before losing to Villante.