HONOLULU (KHNL) - A Hawaii fighting champ is humbled by his fans, a popular surfing contest was almost canceled and a car crash tied up traffic on the freeway.
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Counting down number 3: Car crash snarls traffic
"He was in pain, but seemed to be not life-threatening pain," said one witness. "And so we tried to get him comforted and away from the scene, while my son and his girlfriend were caring for the girl inside."
A car crash on the H-1 freeway near Kunia created traffic woes for leeward Oahu drivers.
Witnesses say the car was speeding and weaving in and out of traffic, before the driver lost control. It ran up a hill and flipped, landing on its roof in the middle of the eastbound lanes.
The crash shut down all but one lane on the eastbound side and tied up traffic going westbound.
Number 2: Popular contest almost canceled
"A lot of the women and the girls, they'd be bummed out," said China Uemura, if the contest would've been canceled. "They look forward to coming to this event, because it's one of the largest women event in the United States."
For more than a decade, women surfers look forward to competing in China Uemura's surf contest. The competition is good and it's for a good cause. But it was almost canceled this year.
Uemura blames the economy. But the contest still took a hit. There were about a hundred fewer contestants this year because many mainland and foreign surfers couldn't afford the higher airfares.
And the number one story: UFC champ BJ Penn humbled by fans
"It's always amazing when you get a great crowd out," said BJ Penn. "I never know how it is cause I'm in Hilo all the time, so when I come out to the other islands, it's like that's right, fighting, you realize how big it is."
Hawaii's fighting champ comes to Honolulu in a hero's welcome. After a big win in Las Vegas, mixed martial artist BJ Penn meets hundreds of fans.
The Hilo native admits even he doesn't realize how bright his star is shining right now.
The UFC lightweight champ solidified his status as one of the best pound for pound fighter in the world.
But it's what he does outside the ring that makes him unique. Humble, mellow and always wants to represent Hawaii and its people.