AKA light heavyweight and heavyweight Mike Kyle
will step in to fight contender Antonio Silva
on this Saturday's Strikeforce: Henderson vs. Babalu card, Strikeforce revealed Monday to MMAFighting.com's Ariel Helwani.
Kyle replaces Valentijn Overeem
, who recently pulled out of the card due to an elbow injury
"[Kyle] talked to us about fighting at heavyweight about a month now or six weeks, about taking bigger fights," Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker said on The MMA Hour
. "So we think it could be a great matchup and we're happy to put it together."
Kyle (18-7-1), who has settled in as a light heavyweight this year, will return to his original heavyweight class with this fight. The UFC veteran will enter the fight undefeated in six fights (one was a no contest) since the loss to Fabricio Werdum in August 2009. Labeled a bad boy for frequent poor sportsmanship in the mid-2000s, Kyle has as of late been trying to clean up his image with wins in Strikeforce: Challengers, XMMA in Australia and several King of the Cage events.
"Bigfoot" Silva (14-2) is coming off a win over Andrei Arlovski via unanimous decision in May, evening his Strikeforce record to 1-1. Silva shares with Kyle a most recent loss to Werdum. Prior to Arlovski, Silva lost in his Strikeforce debut to the two-time ADCC grappling champ by decision.
The Dec. 4 Strikeforce card in St. Louis, the promotion's year-end show, also features Dan Henderson vs. Renato "Babalu" Sobral, Robbie Lawler vs. Matt Lindland and Paul Daley vs. Scott Smith in televised action.