Brunson Reveals James Bout for Strikeforce Challengers 20

By Mike Whitman Oct 5, 2011
Next for Derek Brunson is AKA's Nate James (right). | Photo: Keith Mills

Undefeated welterweight prospect Derek Brunson Wednesday announced that he will face American Kickboxing Academy representative Nate James on Nov. 18 at Strikeforce Challengers 20.

Emanating from the Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas, Challengers 20 will be headlined by a middleweight scrap between Antwain Britt and Lumumba Sayers. Additionally, the main draw -- which airs live on Showtime, delayed on the west coast -- will showcase a women's 145-pound affair between unbeaten Olympic judo bronze medalist Ronda Rousey and striking specialist Julia Budd.

A three-time Division II All-American wrestler, Brunson made his pro MMA debut in May of last year. Since that time, the Renzo Gracie and Greg Jackson protege has rattled off eight-straight wins, including two Strikeforce victories.

The 27-year-old bested Jeremy Hamilton in his inaugural Strikeforce outing on June 24 and followed that decision win with a submission victory over Lumumba Sayers on July 30 at “Fedor vs. Henderson.”

James has won four of his last five contests. Following a successful career on the local circuit, the 33-year-old Oklahoman was called up to fight at Bellator 40 in April, losing a split decision to Tyler Stinson.

After rebounding with a win over Marcus Sursa in June, James made a successful Strikeforce debut, earning a hard-fought unanimous decision over Danillo Villefort in a back-and-forth affair at Challengers 18.


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