It's been a rough couple of weeks for Hawaii fighters in the UFC. On Thursday it got rougher with the announcement that top-prospect Maki Pitolo of Nanakuli was forced to withdraw from next week's Dana White's Tuesday Night Contender Series matchup.
Pitolo (9-4) revealed that he suffered a shoulder injury that will require 3-6 weeks of being sidelined before he can return to training.
The 27-year old was scheduled to face undefeated middleweight Chibwikem Onyenegech
"I just want to thank all of Hawaii and my family and teams for all the support through this camp. I believe these things happen for a reason! It's just a minor set back for a greater comeback! My time will come! Much mahalos" Pitolo told KHON2 Sports Director Rob DeMello.
Pitolo's last bout came in October of 2017 when he snapped a two fight losing streak with a first round knockout of Thiago Rela in the Cage Fury Fighting Championships promotion.
Pitolo's injury comes on the heels of teammates Yancy Medeiros (fractured rib) and Max Holloway (concussion like symptoms) being forced to pull-out of their respective UFC 226 bouts last week in Las Vegas.
Since last week Hawaii fighters have gone 0-5 in the UFC with losses by Hilo's Brad Tavares and Waianae's Rachael Ostovich in The Ultimate Fighter Finale 27 in las Vegas last Friday, followed by DWTNCS losses by Hilo's Joey Gomez, Maui's Rilley Dutro, and Ewa Beach's Toby Misech earlier this week.
On July 24th Kailua's Canaan Kawaihae will have a chance to get Hawaii back in the win column when he faces Chase Hooper in the featherweight division of Dana White's Tuesday Night Contender Series.