Kimbo Slice will fight no more on CBS or Showtime.
ProElite Inc., the parent company behind the EliteXC mixed martial arts competitions that had run in primetime on CBS and Showtime, is shutting its doors and ceasing operations after acquisition talks with Showtime fell through. Showtime owns a 20% stake in West L.A.-based ProElite.
CBS raised eyebrows earlier this year by cutting a deal for four primetime specials showcasing the raucous EliteXC cage-fighting bouts featuring male and femme combatants. The Eye had aired three of the four specials, with the most recent bout on Oct. 4 drawing respectable ratings for the network. Showtime, which began airing EliteXC fights last year, had been skedded to run another event on Nov. 8.
But it appears that ProElite defaulted on a debt that it owed to Showtime, which hastened the company’s demise. According to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission on Tuesday, ProElite owes Showtime at least $6.3 million. Acquisition talks ended last week when Ken Hershman, Showtime’s senior veep and g.m. of sports and event programming, resigned from ProElite’s board of directors, according to the SEC filing.