Frank Trigg signs three-fight deal with WVR; Strikeforce next?
by MMAjunkie.com Staff on Jul 07, 2008 at 10:39 am ET
Veteran middleweight fighter Frank Trigg (16-6) has signed a three-fight deal with the Japanese-based World Victory Road organization, and as planned, he's agreed to debut with the organization at its Aug. 24 "Sengoku 4" event.
Trigg told MMAjunkie.com (UFC blog for UFC news, UFC rumors, fighter interviews and event previews/recaps | MMAjunkie.com
) that he signed the contract on Sunday.
However, WVR officials haven't yet decided on an opponent for the 37-year-old's debut fight.
Trigg, who said the WVR deal is non-exclusive (though the organization retains the right to first refusal), will fight for the first time since a December 2007 victory over Edwin Dewees at an HDNet Fights event.
Additionally, although currently unannounced, WVR plans to host a middleweight tournament sometime in 2009 that would likely include Trigg and Kazuo Misaki (20-8-2), a top-10 middleweight whom Trigg beat at PRIDE 33 in February 2007. Misaki has been vocal about wanting a rematch.
WVR officials want the fight to happen in Japan, especially since Trigg has garnered a renewed fan base in Japan. He attributes the recent surge in popularity to his duties as a commentator for Total Nonstop Action (TNA) Wrestling.
"TNA has gotten pretty big in Japan, so it got my name back out there," said Trigg.
Although the WVR deal is now confirmed, Trigg wouldn't comment on rumors that he's also currently in negotiations with Strikeforce. Sources close to the California-based promotion tell MMAjunkie.com that Trigg has been in talks with Strikeforce about fighting for the organization if NBC, its broadcast partner, eventually decides to air live MMA events.
Strikeforce Vice President Mike Afromowitz recently told MMAjunkie.com's Steve Sievert that the organization is "periodically" in talks with the peacock network and that, "Of course, we want to be live on the network."
"Strikeforce on NBC," a weekly highlights show that airs on Saturday nights, has been a surprise hit for the network, which has sparked speculation that live events could be next. Strikeforce also recently signed Misaki, and Trigg vs. Misaki II could be a solid addition to any Strikeforce card.
Trigg wouldn't confirm any negotiations for that fight or any others in Strikeforce, but he did say that fighting on U.S. network television is "definitely a goal of mine."
Trigg, a former UFC and PRIDE fighter, was the ICON Sport middleweight champion until a loss to Robbie Lawler in March 2007. He's won three of his past four fights.