The last we heard from ProElite, Gus Johnson was pumping undue hyperbole into his headset after Seth Petruzelli did what no Miami street brawler could do and knocked out Kimbo Slice.
The fight, seen live on CBS on October 4, 2008, sent promotion EliteXC and parent company ProElite into a tailspin. The Kimbo Slice bubble popped. Petruzelli insinuated the promotion offered him incentives to shy away from grappling. EliteXC ran a ShoXC card the following week before scrapping a November date scheduled to feature Robbie Lawler vs. Joey Villasenor and Nick Diaz vs. Eddie Alvarez. By October 20, EliteXC ceased operations and ProElite found itself in Dana White's MMA graveyard.
Two weeks ago, Stratus Media Group -- who had shown interest in purchasing Strikeforce -- purchased 95% ownership in ProElite. Middle Easy's rumor mill suggests the company has lofty goals:
We will be talking to the new CEO of ProElite tomorrow, however it's rumored that the primary investor of the now-defunct 'Impact FC' will financially team-up with ProElite and they have every intention to compete with the UFC once again.
For their sake, I hope that's typical promoterspeak. Competing with the UFC, without any market penetration and a barren talent pool, is a quixotic quest.
ProElite announced their return show for August 27 in Hawaii. Local Hawaii network KHON2 reported that Andrei Arlovski has signed with the copmany, and Kendall Grove, recently released from the UFC, is also in negotiations.
Former Strikeforce matchmaker Rich Chou and former ICON Sport and Superbrawl owner T. Jay Thompson have been hired by ProElite.