Originally written on hov-mma  |  Last updated 11/17/14

Those trademark red and blue Strikeforce 8 oz gloves were put to good use last night in the Rose City. A new champion was crowned, another remained, and two new 185'ers arrived. Below you will find your event rewind for the 61st fight card (Challengers cards included) from a promotion that may not have a whole lot more.

• Middleweight Championship Bout: Luke Rockhold (C) vs. Tim Kennedy - In one of the more interesting promotional campaigns in recent fight history, this one was dubbed as surfer vs. sniper. It was the surfer emerging victorious in what would be his second successful Strikeforce middleweight title defense. Although this wasn't a fight that you would dub an instant classic, it did show that Rockhold is hands down the right champion for the organization. Along with "Jacare" Souza, he is the only 185'er that could make a dent in the UFC.

For a 25 minute title fight there really wasn't a whole lot in terms of volume here. Rockhold out struck Kennedy 70-52. The champ hit 1 out of 3 of his takedowns while the challenger struggled mightily only hitting 2 of 12. Kennedy did look like his was in a bit of trouble during the 4th round after Rockhold dropped him with a right hook a little more than midway through the round. Kennedy showed once again that he's a near impossible out - he's only been finished once, due to a cut in his first pro MMA fight - he recovered only to eventually lose his second shot at a Strikeforce glory via UD once again.

Final Result: Luke Rockhold (10-1) defeats Tim Kennedy (14-4) via UD (49-46 x 3) to remains Strikeforce Middleweight Champion

• Welterweight Championship Bout: Tyron Woodley vs. Nate Marquardt - Nick Diaz's vacated welterweight title was up for grabs last night in Portland and the two men vying for it left it all inside the hexagon. The man who emerged champion looks like he could rival Diaz as the greatest Strikeforce welterweight of all time.

Marquardt was up 2 rounds to 1 entering the championship rounds of this fight. Woodley dropped Marquardt in the 3rd winning him that round but seems to be a bit spent. It's Marquardt who comes through just over a minute and a half into the 4th finishing Woodley in a flurry (elbows, left hook, and a right uppercut that had "finish him" written all over it) that will go down as the best Strikeforce KO of the year.

Now that Marquardt becomes only the 2nd welterweight champion in the promotions history it'll be interesting to see who comes for him next. The star power of Marquardt could bring over lower-tier UFC welterweights that want a shot at that strap. If not, then the only names on the current roster that could get a shot would be Jason High, Jordan Mein, or Kazuo Misaki. Great fighters, I just don't see any of them giving Nate the challenge he deserves.

Final Result: Nate Marquardt (32-10-2) defeats Tyron Woodley (10-1) via KO (elbows and punches), (Round 4, 1:39)

• Middleweight bout: Keith Jardine vs. Roger Gracie - This one wasn't even close. Gracie had the advantage striking (46-11) and in take downs (3-0) leaving his opponents face a bloody mess (when isn't it). Jardine, who has never been submitted in his career, wouldn't be finished on the night by the man who's last name is synonymous with submissions. As a fan of Jardine this one was hard to watch, he really didn't offer anything but survival techniques in this one. I'd say cut him but at this point Strikeforce needs all of the "names" they can hang onto.

Final Result: Roger Gracie (5-1) defeats Keith Jardine (17-11-2) via UD (29-27, 30-27, 30-26)

• Middleweight bout: Robbie Lawler vs. Lorenz Larkin - Another lopsided decision but a more entertaining effort from Lawler here. When doesn't the "Ruthless" one bring his heart into the cage (even if he ends up flat on his face it isn't because of a lack of effort). It looked like Lawler could finish it early put Larkin into a world of hurt but from then on it was all Larkin. A win of Lawler puts Larkin at the most one more win away from a shot at Rockhold in the deepest of shallow divisions under the Strikeforce umbrella.

Final Result: Lorenz Larkin (13-0) defeats Robbie Lawler (19-9) via UD (30-27 x 3)

Prelim rewind after the break -

• Lightweight bout: Pat Healy vs. Mizuto Hirota - This one ended in a pretty controversial decision from the judges. Hirota was the more accurate striker who seemed to be more effective with his take downs in this 15 minute lightweight affair. Yet Healy was awarded a 30-27 on one of the judges scorecards. The 29-28 I don't have an issue with since it was a pretty close fight but Hirota took the first two rounds on mine (and most others) scorecards making for what should have at least been a split decision. The best part about this is that Healy will most likely get a title shot against Gilbert Melendez following this unimpressive victory due to a major lack of challengers in this division. For all of the great things that come with Strikeforce, holding Melendez hostage so he can fight average fighters isn't one of them. That said, Hirota is a great addition to the roster.

Final Result: Pat Healy (28-16) defeats Mizuto Hirota (14-5-1) via UD (30-27, 29-28 x 2)

• Lightweight bout: Ryan Couture vs. Joe Durate - Another great showing from the UFC Hall of Famer's son here showing that he didn't get these fights based on his last name. Couture showed off his submission defense in this one and he even threw in an omoplota attempt of his own for good measure. This is the promotion for Couture if he ever wants to get a title shot. Heck, in my opinion he'd be more deserving than Healy after last night but that'd just be pushing it. They are doing the right thing with Couture, bringing him up slowly. The kid is a game fighter and a pleasure to watch. His win over a crafty vet like Joe Durate further proved that he may still have a lot to learn, but he's not taking his MMA career lightly. There are plenty of options for Couture next at 155, expect to see him again before the year is out.

Final Result: Ryan Couture (5-1) defeats Joe Duarte (10-3) via Split Decision (28-29, 29-28 x 2)

• Lightweight bout: Jorge Masvidal vs. Justin Wilcox - A "Gamebred" Masvidal had Wilcox heading for ze hills after landing a flying knee in the 1st round of this one. Masvidal chased Wilcox around the cage looking for the finish but Wilcox was able to avoid what seemed to be the inevitable. Wilcox ended up surviving and even stealing the final round in this one but it was Masvidal getting the nod here, putting him back in the win column after his loss to Melendez late last year.

Final Result: Jorge Masvidal (23-7) defeats Justin Wilcox (11-5) via Split Decision (28-29, 29-28, 30-27)

• Welterweight bout: Jordan Mein vs. Tyler Stinson - Jordan Mein is another one of those fighters on the Strikeforce roster that doesn't get enough publicity. His finish of Evangelista "Cyborg" Santos last September in Cincinnati still blows my MMA mind. The Alberta native that the kids call "Young Gun" put together a clinic on Tyler Stinson last night, although he was not able to finish, it may just be enough to earn him a shot at Marquardt in the near future.

Final Result: Jordan Mein (25-8) defeats Tyler Stinson (23-9) via UD (30-27 x 3)

• Welterweight bout: Jason High vs. Nate Moore - In a fight that didn't make the Showtime Extreme broadcast I'll have to just go off of what I saw on Twitter. Here goes - the fight was short and Jason High won via guillotine.That makes it 7 in a row for KC's finest and 2 straight against dudes with the last name of Moore.

Final Result: Jason High (16-3) defeats Nate Moore (8-3) via guillotine choke (Round 1, 0:26)


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