HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - This weekend Bellator makes it’s official return to the islands as Hawaii native Ilima-Lei Macfarlane headlines Bellator 236 at the Blaisdell Arena Saturday Dec. 21.
The Bellator MMA organization has long standing ties with Hawaii fight fans as both the company’s CEO Scott Coker and matchmaker Rich Chou have long histories of promoting fights here in the islands.
Now with a Hawaii fighter as one of the promotions premiere faces, Macfarlane and the Bellator 'Ohana will look to capture the same magic they did in 2018 with a pair of fight cards this upcoming weekend.
On Friday, Bellator will hold a special Salute The Troops fight card in which heavyweight contenders Josh Barnett (35-8) and Ronny Markes (19-7) will headline a night of fights dedicated to service members.
Ilima-Lei will defend her Flyweight title against Kate Jackson on Saturday as the headline bout of Bellator 236 the following evening.
Although Macfarlane is undefeated during her professional career (10-0), she believes Kate Jackson (11-3-1) could present one of her toughest tests yet.
“Kate is super underrated,” said Macfarlane during an interview on Hawaii News Now Sunrise. “She is super well rounded so I really like this match-up stylistically I think it’s going to be a really entertaining fight.”
Macfarlane and Barnett joined the Hawaii News Now Sunrise show to breakdown their upcoming bouts.