Todd Duffee, Alistair Overeem will fight
Todd Duffee verbally accepted a late-notice fight against Alistair Overeem for Dec. 31 in Saitama, Japan, as part of "Dynamite!! 2010," sources close to the fighter and promoter confirmed to ESPN.com on Thursday.
Duffee will sign a bout agreement with promoter FEG upon his arrival in Japan on Sunday or Monday. The 25-year-old heavyweight is currently training in Colorado with Mike Whitehead, who will act as Duffee's chief second on New Year's Eve at the Saitama Super Arena.
Duffee is expected to net $60,000 for his first fight since the UFC released him in September, three months after a stunning knockout loss to Mike Russow.
The American's participation in the traditional year-end fight festivities comes as he continues to recover from a knee injury that, in part, prompted him to turn down bouts in Strikeforce against Daniel Cormier and Antonio Silva.
Presuming he is healthy enough following the bout against Overeem (33-11), the 6-foot-3, 260-pound Duffee (6-1) is scheduled to compete Jan. 28 against little-known Abe Wagner (6-3) in Kansas City.
Overeem, Strikeforce's heavyweight champion, is two weeks removed from capturing the K-1 World Grand Prix 2010 Final -- a three-round single-night elimination tournament comprised of kickboxing's best heavyweights. The 30-year-old Dutchman has not competed in MMA since a first-round dismantling of Brett Rogers last May.
Overeem-Duffee is one of 14 bouts set for "Dynamite!! 2010" featuring K-1 kickboxing or MMA rules, including two Dream championship contests.
Bibiano Fernandes (8-2) defends his featherweight title against Hiroyuki Takaya (14-8-1), and welterweight champion Marius Zaromskis (13-5) faces weathered Japanese legend Kazushi Sakuraba (26-13-1). Also on the card, top-10 ranked lightweights Josh Thomson and Tatsuya Kawajiri fight for the first time.
Josh Gross covers mixed martial arts for ESPN.com.