UFC Still Going to Hawaii But Wanted B.J. Penn to Headline at Aloha Stadium

February 8, 2012

The UFC’s goal of landing in Hawaii is still happening, but not the way they wanted.

The promotion has long talked about landing on the island where MMA continues to be a thriving and very popular sport, but their best laid plans took a hit last October.

According to UFC President Dana White, the plan for the UFC’s first ever show in Hawaii was to have former lightweight and welterweight champion B.J. Penn headline a card at the Aloha Bowl.

Unfortunately when Penn lost to Nick Diaz at UFC 137 last October, the Hawaiian has opted to take some much needed time off and it threw a bit of a monkey wrench into their plans.

“We’re still working on that, but we want to do it. I was kind of hoping to go to Hawaii again and do a B.J. (Penn) fight at the Aloha Bowl, but B.J. wants to take some time off. He’s going to relax for a while,” White revealed about the UFC going to Hawaii.

The Aloha Bowl is a reference to Aloha Stadium in Honolulu, Hawaii. It would have marked one of the first times the UFC has gone to an outdoor stadium for a show. The stadium seats approximately 50,000 when filled to capacity.

They haven’t shut the door on going to Hawaii by any means, but the plan was to have Penn, who is a huge star in his native state, headline the show.

It’s still possible however that if a Hawaii show comes together, that could be just the temptation that Penn needs to bring him back from his time off.

Either way, the UFC will still be going to the state, it’s just not locked in as to when that might happen.

“We’re coming regardless,” said White. “But that was the fight I really wanted to do there.”

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