M-1 Global searching for new location for previously announced "Breakthrough" event
by John Morgan on Aug 05, 2009 at 8:20 pm ET
M-1 Global may be ready for a "Breakthrough," but California isn't ready to host it.
SI.com's Josh Gross reported on today's edition of his podcast "Gross Point Blank" that the previously announced "M-1 Breakthrough" event will not take place at the Los Angeles Convention Center as was originally planned.
) has since confirmed Gross' report, though a source close to the organization insists the event will still take place on Aug. 28, though a new location has yet to be determined.
M-1 Global announced in July that "Breakthrough" would take place in conjunction with IMMAE, an international MMA trade show, and that the show would be broadcast on HDNet. Muhammed "King Mo" Lawal and Don Frye were announced as the evening's headliners, while Nick Thompson and Karl Amoussou were also slated to meet.
According to Gross' report, the organization never approached the California State Athletic Commission about the event.
"According to Bill Douglas of the [CSAC], who I talked to on Tuesday, he said that they hadn't heard a thing regarding the show," Gross said. "The original party involved informed them that the event was not happening, and they could take it off the schedule.
"It was supposed to be done in conjunction with an MMA expo at the L.A. Convention Center. There had been some meetings and some deadlines set, but those deadlines passed."
Gross' report indicates that M-1 initially sought to relocate the show to Nevada, and Nevada State Athletic Commission Executive Director confirmed with MMAjunkie.com that he had been approached about the possibility of a switch to Buffalo Bill's Resort & Casino in Primm, Nev. ? but not by M-1 Global.
"I've never talked to anyone at M-1," Kizer said. "I know no one from M-1. But Roy Engelbrecht, he had contacted me about the possibility."
Engelbrecht, a respected promoter who has held a number of events on Nevada, is the owner of Roy Engelbrecht Events and a former COO of Oscar De La Hoya's Golden Boy Promotions.
"I said, 'Roy, I know no one from M-1,'" Kizer said. "'I know nothing about M-1. They need to get licensed.'
"Sometimes a promoter might have his application pending, but there's not time to have him get licensed in time for the show, so he might have to turn the show over to a licensed promoter and let that licensed promoter be the promoter."
Engelbrecht recently held a similarly co-promoted boxing event in Nevada with former middleweight champion boxer Fernando Vargas. Kizer said the NSAC was able approve the co-promotion because they were familiar with Vargas, and he was also in the process of having his license approved at the time of the event.
A promoter's license in Nevada costs $500 annually. Kizer said the renewal process each year is a simple one-page form, but the initial license application does require a bit more time and effort.
"The initial application process ... is more like 30 pages," Kizer said. "But it's very straightforward ? personal history form, personal finance form, business questionnaire. You turn in your fingerprint cards, you post a $10,000 bond ? which isn't very much per year to maintain ? or you could actually purchase a $10,000 CD and then you get the interest, we don't. We don't get anything unless we have to cash it to pay back some ticket holders who got stiffed."
Kizer said he advised Engelbrecht to have an M-1 representative fill out the initial application.
"I told Roy, 'I'm not sure what to tell you, but let them know to at least get a packet, fill it out and send it in,'" Kizer said. "'Even then I can't guarantee that quick of a turnaround.'
"He wrote back the next day and said, 'They're going to do it in the Midwest instead.' I said, 'OK. They're still free to apply any time they want to.' Hopefully they will."
Gross' report suggests Oklahoma may be in line as a host for the relocated event, but Kizer insisted he hopes to hear from the promotion in the future ? as well as another organization that is also currently unlicensed in Nevada.
"I've never met anyone from M-1 before ever in my life," Kizer said. "Roy's a damn good promoter, but it's like, 'Roy, what's the deal here?' And he understood. I said, 'Just tell these guys whether or not they want they want to pursue this show or not, if they're looking to do shows in Las Vegas, that's great ? tell them to get the packet and fill it out as soon as they can.'
"I hope they still do that, and I hope Strikeforce does, as well."
For the latest on "M-1 Breakthrough," stay tuned to the MMA Rumors section of MMAjunkie.com.