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Nick Diaz vs. Hayato Sakurai Set for DREAM 14; Shinya Aoki vs. Tatsuya Kawajiri Likely for DREAM 15

Strikeforce welterweight champ Nick Diaz is reportedly set to fight veteran Hayato Sakurai in a non-title bout at DREAM 14 on May 30 in Saitama, Japan, while the promotion is also planning a matchup between lightweight champ Shinya Aoki and Tatsuya Kawajiri for it’s July DREAM 15 card.

Diaz (21-7) has won six-straight, including wins over Frank Shamrock and Scott Smith in 2009 before claiming the 170-pound title with a first-round TKO of Marius Zaromskis in January, while Sakurai (35-10-2) had won 8 of his last 9 before suffering losses to Zaromskis and Akihiro Gono to close out 2009.

Aoki (23-4) has won three-straight and 6 of his last 7, including a first-round submission of Sengoku champ Mizuto Hirota in December, but will meet Strikeforce champ Gilbert Melendez on April 24 before returning to action in Japan. Kawajiri (26-5-2) is 7-1 since 2007, including a current four-fight win streak with his most-recent victory a unanimous decision over Kazunori Yokota on New Year’s Eve.

DREAM’s May 30 event, which also features the opening round of it’s light heavyweight grand prix, was expected to be DREAM 15, but was re-named DREAM 14 after an April event in South Korea was canceled.

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Pictured: Nick Diaz


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