3X State Wrestling Champ Akeo continues hopeful road to MMA gold in X-1
Article from: https://www.khon2.com/
X-1 World Events will bring their “March Madness” card to the Filcom Center in Waipahu on Friday night, where one of the most intriguing prospects in Hawaii mixed martial arts will look to continue his quest to a championship.
Mililani’s Braydon Akeo is no stranger to success in the islands, as the former Trojan had one of the most successful prep wrestling careers in state history.
Akeo is a three-time HHSAA Wrestling State Champion having won titles at 108 lbs, 125 lbs, and 138 lbs from 2012-2014.
“My wrestling is definitely one of my biggest strengths and skills. Not only was I a three time state champ but I went on to wrestle at the next level in college and trained at the Olympic training site, went all over the world and trained and competed with the best,” Akeo told KHON2 Sports Director Rob DeMello.
Four months after making his pro debut with a win over Sean Gee at Prime Fighting 11 in Washington via second round TKO.
Akeo will make his Hawaii pro debut against Maui’s Austin Bloch in the co-main event of the X-1 card.
Bloch, also brings a strong wrestling background to the matchup as he is also a former state wrestling champ at King Kekaulike in 2012.
“I got a lot of respect for (Bloch), it’s nothing personal with me and him. It’s not a kid I don’t like or anything like that but this is a fight, this is war. I’m going to bring it,” added Akeo.
Braydon Akeo vs. Austin Bloch
Akeo says he has high aspirations for his young career and has supreme confidence that he will one day reach the sport’s pinnacle of the UFC and will be the first to say that getting there won’t all be on him. He has much gratitude for those that came before him and paved the way for local fighters to fight their way from X-1 to the UFC.
“It definitely makes my job a lot easier. A lot of fighters in the past, they got to fight for so long to get that chance at the UFC. With all the roads that have been paved over these last few years I feel like all that I have to do is my part. I just got to show up and perform in the cage and the rest of those things will kind of handle itself,” said Akeo.
Reigning UFC featherweight champion Max Holloway, ONE Championship atomweight champion Angela Lee, along with UFC contenders Brad Tavares and Rachael Ostovich are among the X-1 alums currently enjoying pro careers in major promotions.
“I got my long term goals set on a world championship. Those before show me what’s possible. If it’s the X-1 belt first that fine, that’s great, but I’m just trying to get through this next challenge first and then keep climbing from there.”
X-1 52 will feature a main event welterweight state title bout between Keali’i Kanekoa of the Big Island against Maui’s Zach Zane.
Zach Zane vs. Keali’i Kanekoa (X-1 Welterweight State Championship)
Zane took the fight on just five days notice and is moving up two weight-classes.
Another pro bout on the card will feature Bellator veteran Shojin Miki against Kana Hyatt at flyweight.
Fight card starts at 7:00 pm.
For more information on X-1 52: March Madness at the FilCom Center in Waipahu, CLICK HERE.
X-1 52 COMPLETE CARD
Zach Zane vs Keali’i Kanekoa(170lb State Title Bout)
Braydon Akeo vs Austin Bloch*Big Island* (145lb Pro MMA Bout)
Shojin Miki vs Kana Hyatt (125lb Pro MMA Bout)
Ben Wilhelm vs Daniel Terry*Big Island* (155lb Pro MMA Bout)
Geremy Martyn vs Donald Gonzalez*Big Island* (135lb Pro MMA Bout)
Akeem Coit vs Zach Winters (135lb Ammy Bout)
Blake Perry vs Isaiah Fonseca (170lb Ammy Bout)