Japanese indy promotion DEEP will head to China for the first time in its 10 year existence on Jan. 8, 2011. "Mayhem In Macau" will take place at Macau's Cotai Arena, which can hold anywhere from 7,000 to 15,000 patrons, depending on the seating arrangement. The promotion has launched an English-language website for the show and is offering ticket packages which include ferry fare from Hong Kong to Macau.
Macau is an interesting choice of location for DEEP's first international event, considering some recent goings-on. In early October, Macau-based promotion Fury MMA's "Armageddon" event was canceled at the 11th hour, leaving fighters such as Carina Damm and Eiji Ishikawa stranded as local authorities investigated embezzlement claims. Nonetheless, many believe China to be ripe for MMA invasion, and Chinese promotions such as Legend FC and Art of War have found modest success on the mainland in the past few years.
The only fight announced thus far features DEEP megaton champion Yusuke Kawaguchi defending his title for the first time in over a year against Kazuhisa Tazawa. Also announced as participants: welterweight champ Yuya Shirai, former middleweight ace Ryuta Sakurai, JEWELS veteran Saori Ishioka,decorated BJJ player Marcos "Marquinho" Souza (in his MMA debut), "TUF" alum Andy Wang, plus Luiz Andrade, Alex Niu, Yasuki Kitazaki, Yoann Gouaida and Ann Tipsuta Wongkhamma.