Posted 4/30/07 3:11:00PM
In an interview with MMAWeekly.com Monday evening, Icon Sport founder T.J. Thompson said crisis management, or lack thereof, brought Pro Elite down.
Thompson history with Elite began in August of 2007 when he sold his Hawaiian MMA promotion Icon Sport to the then-expanding company. As part of his deal, he entered into a five-year consulting deal with the Los Angeles-based company and participated in many strategic talks with its executives.
A 15-year industry veteran who got his start promoting fights in the backrooms of bars to a couple hundred fans, Thompson got a call Monday morning from EliteXC Head of Fight Operations Jeremy Lappen, who informed him that the company had filed for bankruptcy and everyone in the company would be let go.
Thompson said it was CBS, not Showtime, who backed out of an impending deal to purchase the ailing fight promotion. Last Tuesday, he spoke with Elite CEO Chuck Champion, who said the company had a fifty-fifty shot of surviving.
“His opinion was that the deal was either going to close in the next two to four weeks, or it was going to crash a lot faster than that,” Thompson said.
Posted 7/5/07 11:42:00PM
i saw it coming next year but out of thin air like this i am a little shocked
i was looking forward too the next event in nov. these guys will find homes quick ufc, i think alvarez and diaz will go to japan
i do think the ufc will grab some of these guys like brett rodgers and dave peewee herman for their heavyweight division as well as antonio silva
also i think robbie lawler will come back to ufc and maybe benji radach
kj noons i have no clue, refael feliajo will be in the ufc with silva and big nog's support.
i am sad to see it go, it was a change from the ufc, but when you got caught cheating and bribbing fighters i guess you reap what u soe
Posted 7/9/07 11:43:00AM
the downfall was payin kimbo 500k imo
Posted 6/21/07 11:51:00AM
This is also more proof on why organizations must keep fighter salaries under control. The pay needs to be fair, but paying someone $500k or more per fight can put the entire organization in jeopardy.
Posted 5/12/08 12:26:00PM
I feel bad for the company going under. It may have ruined a lot of up and coming fighters. They were big and held 4 other smaller event companies. Idk what they'll do. CBS took a gamble on the whole thing and now their out. But its seems like there has to be someone else besides UFC. I mean i loved it when Pride was around. hmm..... hopefully Affliction can do well and stay a float.
Posted 7/14/07 1:42:00PM
Last Sunday, on Fox Sports Network (Cincy, or your local area, channel 661 on DircectTV where I live) started showing old King of the Cage fights between 9 and 10 PM EST. Since KOTC was bought by ProElite, I hope they still show these fights on Sundays for a while.
Oh, and Dana, please sign Antonio Silva, after on the steriod crap gets cleared up. He'll be interesting to watch, although I don't ever expect him to win the title. Also, Lawler and Diaz back to the UFC???? Maybe Shields??
The only thing that sucks about this is not seeing the free fights, but otherwise, the Shaws were idiots and not good for the sport.
Posted 5/29/07 2:40:00PM
Definately agree about them signing a lot of their top talent. I'm happy that the Shaws are out of mma for now and hopefully forever.
Posted 6/22/07 2:16:00PM
Nick Diaz has stated many times that he wont fight in the UFC its not Dana with a grudge its Nick so lets hope he changes his mind?.
I expect to see a lot of these fighters go to the WEC and a chosen few will head right into the UFC. I really, really hope to see Lawler back in the UFC as I think he is a completely different and better fighter than he was before.
This is bad news for womens MMA, Dana already re-affirmed he will not re-consider a womans division in the UFC, lets hope he starts them up in the WEC. I feel bad for the girls they worked hard to get in the MMA mainstream and now its all dumped down the tubes.
All and All a bunch of people just lost there livelyhood and there was a good talent pool with good fighters there and Dana wont have room for all of them.