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Friday, November 30, 2012
Lorenz Larkin to face Ronaldo Souza

By Franklin McNeil
ESPN.com

Strikeforce middleweight contender Lorenz Larkin will face Ronaldo "Jacare" Souza on Jan. 12 in Oklahoma City, the promotion announced Thursday.

The announcement comes days after a hand injury forced middleweight champion Luke Rockhold to withdraw from his bout with Larkin. It was the second time that an injury led Rockhold to pull out of a fight against Larkin.

The hard-hitting Larkin, who has a professional record of 13-0 with one no-contest, will return to action for the first time since a July 14 unanimous decision over Robbie Lawler.

Souza will bring a 16-3 record and two-fight win streak into the cage against Larkin. He registered an impressive first-round knockout of Derek Brunson in his most recent bout on Aug. 18.

In addition to Larkin-Souza, former light heavyweight titleholder Gegard Mousasi will face placed Mike Kyle in a main-card bout.

Moussasi (32-3-2) has not fought since December 2011 when he earned a unanimous decision over Ovince St. Preux.

Kyle is 19-8-1 with two no-contests as a pro.

During his most recent bout on May 19, Kyle was submitted in the first round by Rafael Cavalcante. But the outcome of that fight was changed to a no-contest when Cavalcante tested positive for a banned substance.

Cavalcante, a former Strikeforce light heavyweight champion, is currently on a one-year suspension by the California State Athletic Commission.