Ex-UFC fighter Elias Theodorou dies at 34 on account of most cancers

Theodorou fought in 22 bouts in blended martial arts, together with 11 (8-3 file) within the UFC within the middleweight division.

TORONTO — Elias (The Spartan) Theodorou, a charismatic blended martial artist who campaigned efficiently for the appropriate to make use of medical marijuana as an athlete, has died. He was 34.

Jess Moran, his publicist confirmed that the previous UFC fighter died Sunday in Toronto of liver most cancers.

You are reading: Ex-UFC fighter Elias Theodorou dies at 34 on account of most cancers

Theodorou, from Mississauga, Ont., packed rather a lot into his all-too-short life. He was an athlete, actor, mannequin, stuntman, dancer, TV pitchman, Harlequin romance cowl boy and hashish advocate. He did all of it with a smile.

“Your mother’s favorite e book cowl. Your son’s favorite fighter,” Theodorou’s Twitter bio learn again within the day.

TSN struggle analyst Robin Black, a good friend and former fighter himself, mentioned Theodorou had not shared his most cancers analysis publicly. Black reckons Theodorou made that selection “as a result of he couldn’t bear to make individuals unhappy.”

“He was a extremely actually actually particular man,” mentioned Black.

“A optimistic vitality if ever there was one, a person who nearly at all times flashed a successful smile, a person who spoke out about what he believed in,” Canadian fighter Sarah Kaufman mentioned on social media.

Theodorou took up MMA in 2009 after his first yr at Humber School, the place he studied inventive promoting.

He made his professional debut in June 2011 and was 8-0-0 in 2013 when he joined the solid of “The Final Fighter Nations: Canada vs. Australia,” an version of the UFC’s actuality TV present that includes groups of aspiring Canadian and Australian MMA fighters.

Theodorou and 15 different fighters spent six weeks filming in a lodge within the woods about an hour exterior of Montreal.

“It was an fascinating and wonderful expertise,” Theodorou mentioned later.

However not with out its drawbacks.

“I missed ladies,” he added with no scarcity of enthusiasm.

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Theodorou earned his UFC contract in April 2014 when he stopped fellow Canadian Sheldon Westcott through second-round TKO within the TUF Nations finale in Quebec Metropolis.

He went on to win eight of 11 fights as a middleweight within the UFC however was reduce after a Might 2019 loss to Derek Brunson in Ottawa. Whereas Theodorou had a successful file, his grinding model lacked the fireworks the promotion appears for. 9 of his 11 UFC bouts went to a choice.

Theodorou was a fighter with an enormous fuel tank. He saved on the transfer, typically lashing out with kicks or hanging on his opponent on the fence like a limpet as wanted.

His final struggle was a win over Bryan (The Beast) Baker final December on a Colorado Fight Membership card. His professional file was 19 wins and three losses, with six wins in his final seven outings.

Theodorou campaigned for years to make use of medical marijuana within the sport, ultimately securing a therapeutic use exemption for the marijuana he had been prescribed for bilateral neuropathic ache in his arms, wrists and elbows.

Theodorou, who mentioned hashish allowed him “to even the enjoying discipline and struggle at a baseline degree,” obtained the exemption in February 2020 from the B.C. Athletic Fee.

“RIP Elias Theodorou. A terrific individual and a HUGE voice for the extra honest and equitable therapy of marijuana use in MMA and sport,” tweeted Jeff Novitzky, the UFC’s senior vice-president of athlete well being and efficiency.

To name Theodorou a individuals individual didn’t do him justice.

“I’m a really huge extrovert,” he as soon as mentioned with a smile. “A stranger is only a good friend you haven’t met.”

He served as eye sweet/bartender on the TV present “Dragon’s Den” for a “Martini on Wheels” pitch. Whereas it went down in flames, Theodorou nonetheless noticed it as a win.

“Being on TV is at all times a great factor,” he mentioned.

Theodorou used no matter he might so as to add one other ribbon to his intensive bow. He mentioned he owed his work as cowl boy to a part of his anatomy.

“For no matter motive, Harlequin appears to love my butt,” he defined.

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“I prefer to suppose I’m Fabio 2.0 with punches and kicks,” he joked.

He additionally made probably the most of his flowing locks, turning into the “North American model ambassador” for Pert Plus shampoo and conditioner. Theodorou billed himself as having “the very best hair in fight sports activities.”

It was simply one in all many pokers in his fireplace.

“Arduous work will get you extra arduous work,” he mentioned fortunately.

He helped pay for his coaching through Fund a Fighter, a web site that enables followers to contribute to fighters. Some contributors obtained a T-shirt. One lady paid $500 for a date.

He additionally appeared on “The Match Sport” on The Comedy Community.

“I throw it on the market and see what occurs,” he mentioned.

“As a necessity of arising as a blended martial artist, it’s a must to have your arms in each single cookie jar,” he defined.

In March 2018, he took a sexist stereotype and turned it on its head by turning into a hoop boy for the all-female Invicta FC promotion.

“Elias was actually a form, humble and charismatic persona who might be missed enormously by all,” Invicta mentioned in a tweet.

Theodorou, then ranked 14th amongst 185-pound contenders, wanted 10 stitches to shut a diagonal reduce on his brow brought on by a conflict of heads in a UFC bout with Trevor (Scorching Sauce) Smith in Might 2018.

“Nicely, chicks dig scars,” Theodorou mentioned with a smile post-fight. “And by chance so does my girlfriend.”

UFC fighter Michael Chiesa recalled how on a visit to EXOS, an athlete efficiency centre, he was referred to as to a information convention on late discover. Theodorou, seeing his good friend fear that he wasn’t dressed for the event, took off his jacket and gave it to him.

“I by no means obtained an opportunity to provide it again to him,” Chiesa, holding up the jacket, mentioned in a video posted Monday on social media. “That’s the kind of man he was. And whereas I’m unhappy like lots of people — he touched lots of lives — I’ve to recollect I’m very blessed that I had had the friendship I had with him and the numerous nice recollections that I’ve with him. Relaxation in peace, Elias.”

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