Andrei Arlovski Ends Losing Streak at Pro Elite’s Return
By Chris Onzuka
Like a phoenix, ProElite was resurrected from the ashes by two of the most experienced veterans of MMA in Hawaii, T. Jay Thompson and Rich Chou. These two have brought together their collective experiences to go big right out of the gate with their first show “back”. They pulled out all the stops with veteran referees, “Big” John McCarthy, Yuji Shimata (of Pride fame) and Hawaii’s best ref, Chris West. They used a large circular cage, two large screens, and put on a great production. Unfortunately the action inside the cage was mixed. The younger fighters brought a lot of energy and determination into the cage in the under card, but the high profile veterans in the sport left a lot to be desired. Power puncher and KO artist Drew McFedries, was tentative and had a hard time pulling the trigger in his fight. And Andrei Arlovski was also tentative and drew out his match much longer than a fighter of his caliber should have. Arlovski had numerous opportunities to finish Lopes from the full mount numerous times to having him turtle up on his hands and knees. Disappointing performances by two of the most exciting fighters to say the least. However, both are working their way back up the long road back to the top of their respective divisions and sometimes a “W” helps build the much needed confidence to return fighters to their true form. Let’s keep our fingers crossed.
The highlight of the event was thankfully three fold, first the action packed women’s bout featuring Sarah McMann taking on Hawaii’s Raquel Pa’aluhi. These ladies put away the pigtails and fought with as much ferocity as any man. Second, the hype of BJ Penn’s little brother, Reagan Penn’s MMA debut. Many people don’t know that Reagan entered alongside BJ in their first World BJJ Championship in Brazil. Only one of the brothers walked away with a title, but it wasn’t BJ. BJ came in second place in that tournament. Reagan has also been travelling and training with BJ all these years so there was huge hype and expectations leading into this bout. Reagan did not disappoint, after a little take down defense, Reagan pulled off a nice switch and transition to the side mount and back mount and finished Paul Gardiner in a little over a minute. It is a great start for possibly a new dynasty? Finally, it took over 7 years for Kendall Grove to get his revenge from a previous 2004 bout by choking out Joe Riggs in a hair under a minute to end on a high note.
Andrei Arlovski def. Ray Lopez via TKO (punches) R3 2:43
Kendall Grove def. Joe Riggs via submission (guillotine choke) R1, 0:59
Reagan Penn def. Paul Gardiner via submission (rear-naked choke) R1, 1:10
Mark Ellis def. Jake Heun via submission (rear-naked choke) -R2, 2:29
Sara McMann def. Raquel Pa’aluhi via submission (keylock) R3, 2:53
Drew McFedries def. Garrett Olson via TKO (strikes) R2, 4:04
Kaleo Gambill def. Eldon Sproat via TKO (punches) R1, 1:31
Dustin Barca def. Reno Remigio via TKO (doctor’s stoppage) R2, 5:00
Brent Schermerhorn def. Jesse Lundgren via KO (punches) R1, 1:38
Joey Palemia def. Chad Thomas via unanimous decision