Luke Rockhold Slated to Defend Strikeforce Middleweight Title Against Keith Jardine

Strikeforce middleweight champion Luke Rockhold is slated to defend his belt against former UFC veteran Keith Jardine on Jan. 7, MMA Fighting has confirmed with sources close to the fight. The title fight is expected to headline the organization's first event at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino.

Strikeforce has yet to officially announce the card or any fights signed for it as of Thursday evening.

Rockhold was expected to meet Tim Kennedy in his first title defense, but according to sources, Kennedy couldn't commit to the fight due to an undisclosed injury.

Rockhold (8-1) won the title in September when he defeated Ronaldo "Jacare" Souza via unanimous decision. The American Kickboxing Academy member has won his last seven fights in a row.

Jardine (17-9-2) fought Gegard Mousasi to a draw in his Strikeforce debut in April. This fight would mark his first at 185 pounds. "The Dean of Mean" is 2-1-1 since his release from the UFC in June 2010.

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