Another match on the undercard of Strikeforce’s opening round of the Heavyweight Grand Prix tournament has been announced, and it also pits two native New Yorkers against each other.
Yesterday, we announced Igor Gracie VS John Salgado for the prelims, today we can add Marc Stevens VS John Cholish to the undercard. MMAJunkie broke the news of this lightweight scrap. The event takes place February 12 at the IZOD Center in East Rutherford, New Jersey, and features half of the quarterfinals of the promotion’s eight-man heavyweight grand prix.
Stevens was on the previous season of “The Ultimate Fighter”, drafted first by coach Josh Koscheck, with whom he had previously wrestled. In his first fight, he fought Cody McKenzie and was choked out cold in 17 seconds by a guillotine choke. Stevens was later picked to meet Aaron Wilkinson for a second chance as a “Wildcard” pick, but Wilkinson also trapped him in a guillotine in the second round that ended the bout.
Cholish is the current Ring of Combat lightweight champion (as seen in the picture to your left), having beaten Rich Moskowitz at ROC 32 with an inverted triangle choke in the third round of their title fight. The Renzo Gracie student is 5-1 in MMA, as opposed to Stevens who is 12-5, who was on a four-fight winning streak before being cast on TUF. This will be Steven’s first fight since TUF and Cholish’s first fight since winning his title.