Middleweight Kendall Grove will look for his second straight win since parting ways with the UFC when he faces Japanese superstar Ikuhisa Minowa in the main event at ProElite 3 scheduled for January 21 in Grove’s home State of Hawaii. The match-up will only mark the fourth time “Minowaman” has fought outside of Japan in a 91-fight career spanning fifteen years.
News of the bout was first reported by MMAFighting and has since been confirmed by a handful of other respected outlets.
Grove, who went on to win the Ultimate Fighter Season 3 crown while part of the UFC roster, was last seen choking Joe Riggs out in August at ProElite’s debut after being revived from the dead by new ownership to notch the eight submission of his career. The lanky 28-year old holds an overall record of 13-9 including wins over Evan Tanner, Ed Herman, and Alan Belcher.
A fearless competitor who made a reputation for himself fighting much larger opponents overseas, Minowa is 51-32-8 with 4X as many tap-outs to his credit than Grove and could prove to be a stiff test for the BJJ-savvy Hawaiian. Also worth mentioning, “Minowaman” will enter the evening on a four-fight winning streak including a trio of consecutive submissions.
PHOTO CREDIT – UFC
MMATraining Take: On the surface this may not necessarily be a “must see” match-up but it should still be fairly competitive and is a fight Grove has to win. It’s also a nice treat for fans in Hawaii who not only have a lot of love for “Da Spyder” but should also appreciate an appearance from Minowa given the percentage of Japanese people living in the Aloha State.