ProElite returned to Honolulu, Hawaii last Saturday night after a successful debut last August. With the main card streaming live on HDNet, fans all over the country could experience the excitement straight from the Hawaiian islands, where MMA has been a constant for over the last 15 years.
The seven untelevised bouts did not disappoint, as they all finished via submission or TKO in the first and second rounds.
ProElite 3: Da Spyder vs Minowaman – Aftermath
Sebastian Mariconda started off the night quickly defeating Dan Ige with an arm bar submission at 1:15 of the first round. Ray “Braddah Boy” Cooper soon followed with an exciting TKO victory over Kyle Foyle at 2:07 of round two. However, the most exciting fight of the undercard was between Ilima Maiava of Honolulu, Hawaii vs Tatsuya Mizuno of Tokyo, Japan. While it looked like Maiava dominated Mizuno in the first round, Mizuno finished Maiava with a head and arm choke at 1:47 of round two.
Middleweight Brent Schermerhorn of Chris Leben’s Fight School kicked off the main card with a beautiful KO victory over Big Island’s Kaleo Gambill in just 45 seconds of round one.
In the Heavyweight Grand Prix Semi Finals, Pat Cummins finished Tasi “The Tyrant” Edwards via head and arm choke at 4:01 of round one. Ryan Martinez defeated Cody Griffin via unanimous decision in a heavyweight slugfest. Finally, Richard Odoms defeated former University of Hawaii football player, Jake “The Honey Bear” Heun via rear naked choke at 1:56 of round two.
In the semi-main event, Sarah McMann displayed her wrestling prowess by defeating Hitomi Akano via unanimous decision. Momma Bear McMann’s takedowns were too much for Akano to handle, but this fight was a really great showcase of ProElite’s 135 female division. I’m sure that fans could expect a lot more from both of these women from ProElite in the future.
Minowaman’s entrance for the main event brought the kind of energy back to the Blaisdell that has been missing since the days of Icon, Rumble on the Rock, and Superbrawl. Sporting his famous red shorts and a cape with the Japanese flag, Hawaii fans finally got to see his signature entrance live.
In the main event, Da Spyder dominated all three rounds for a unanimous decision from the judges. While I’m sure most fans had hoped to see a finish from either of these fighters, Grove’s performance on the ground was impressive, as it appears his jiu jitsu game continues to evolve fight after fight. And although Minowaman’s performance in the ring was not as exciting as his entrance, you can be sure that Hawaii fight fans will not forget.
Overall, ProElite 3 proved successful. Only three fights out of the 13 bouts on the fight card ended in the judges’ decision, proving yet again that Hawaiians CAN SCRAP.