Gurgel (Pictured; file photo) came in at 154 pounds, while Duarte
tipped the scales at 155 for Friday’s clash at the Palms Casino
Resort in Las Vegas.
Also featuring the Strikeforce debut of Danillo
Villefort, the event’s main card will air live in North America
on premium cable channel Showtime. Villefort (186) will square off
against fellow Strikeforce newcomer Nate James
(185) in a middleweight affair.
Rounding out the evening’s televised proceedings will be another
highly anticipated Strikeforce debutant, as 2008 Olympics judo
bronze medalist Ronda Rousey
(146) takes on Sarah
D’Alelio (146) in a 145-pound women’s tilt.
Gurgel, 34, has lost four of his last six fights. Following a
seven-fight UFC stint that saw the Brazilian post a 3-4 Octagon
record, Gurgel joined the Strikeforce roster in 2009. Since
stepping into the promotion’s hexagonal cage, Gurgel has earned
wins over Conor Heun and
Vaughan while dropping bouts to Billy
Evangelista and K.J. Noons.
Duarte rides a four-fight winning streak into his showdown with
Gurgel. The Guamanian has tasted defeat only twice, his most recent
loss coming in his lone Bellator appearance against Carey Vanier
last year. Duarte made his Strikeforce debut in April, submitting
Awad with an armbar.