POSTED: 1:30 a.m. HST, Jun 30, 2011
The man behind the SuperBrawl and Icon Sport organizations is bringing mixed martial arts back to the islands.
TJay Thompson said yesterday that he's reserved Blaisdell Arena for the first installment of ProElite Fighting on Aug. 27.
Thompson successfully ran MMA events under the SuperBrawl and Icon Sport banners for more than a decade before eventually selling his company to ProElite.
ProElite was responsible for the EliteXC organization that at one point was televised on CBS before eventually folding in late 2008.
The company will begin promoting MMA events again, beginning with August's show in Hawaii.
"They've let me off the leash a little bit," said Thompson, whose last local event was called Kingdom MMA, featuring a main event between Kala Kolohe Hose and Jason "Mayhem" Miller in April of 2009.
Thompson said he's partnered with Rich Chou, who served as matchmaker for StrikeForce before the company was bought by Zuffa, which owns the UFC, earlier this year.
The event is expected to consist of six fights, with at least three fighters with local ties expected on the card.
While none of the fights has been made official, Hose (7-5) is expected to fight former UFC fighter Drew McFedries (9-6), who owns wins over Alessio Sakara and Marvin Eastman.
Also, Raquel Pa‘aluhi (3-1) will compete in the only women's bout against undefeated Sara McMann (2-0), who was the first American to win a silver medal in women's wrestling in the 2004 Summer Olympics in Greece.
Former University of Hawaii football player Jake Heun has agreed to fight heavyweight prospect Mark Ellis in another bout.
Ellis, the 2009 NCAA heavyweight champion in wrestling at Missouri, will make his MMA debut and trains with UFC heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez and StrikeForce fighter Daniel Cormier at American Kickboxing Academy.
Other possible fighters who could potentially compete on the card include former UFC heavyweight champion Andrei Arlovski and Maui's Kendall Grove, who was released from the UFC following a loss in May.