Theodorou was a middleweight veteran of the UFC and a supporter of reform.
Elias Theodorou, a former “The Ultimate Fighter Nations” champion and UFC competitor, passed away on Sunday at the age of 34. Although he had kept it a secret, Theodorou had been battling stage 4 liver cancer. The news was confirmed by a Theodorou representative.
The Canadian middleweight made his mark on the world stage in 2014 when he won his season of “The Ultimate Fighter” by TKO over Sheldon Westcott. Theodorou would go on to compile an 8-3 record in the Octagon, never losing consecutive fights, and only losing to established contenders Thiago Santos, Brad Tavares, and Derek Brunson.
Theodorou’s contract was terminated by the UFC following Brunson’s defeat in May 2019. Outside of the promotion, he would compete three more times, triumphing in each match. He won his final match against former WEC and Bellator fighter Bryan Baker in December 2021.
Theodorou was well known for a number of extracurricular pursuits. He carried ring cards in the manner of “ring girls,” who have been a mainstay of combat sports for almost 60 years, as a “ring boy” for Invicta FC.
Prior to his debut, Theodorou told the BBC that there was a “wider conversation” going on about ring card carriers, “grid girls” in Formula 1, and “walk-on girls” in darts. The entire purpose of this project is to demonstrate that, in my opinion, the solution to increasing equality is to create more options, not fewer. Given that wider conversation, I thought this was really pertinent.
Theodorou was a vocal supporter of cannabis use for medical purposes, particularly for fighters. He was granted a Therapeutic Use Exemption for cannabis use in 2020, making him the first fighter to be a professional athlete in North America.
Theodorou was a cast member of The Amazing Race Canada 3 in 2015.