The complaints about fighter pay keep coming, and Dana White has an … interesting (aka stupid and vindictive) way of dealing with them. Oh, he’s still calling anyone who dare suggest three fights at 8k/8k is too low an idiot, but on top of that he’s now suggesting the UFC may gut the popular bonus system so the promotion can afford to pay newb fighters more. MMA Junkie has the quotes:
“You don’t like the structure? All right, we’ll pay the lower-level guys more money – no more f–king bonuses,” Dana White said. “You guys come in, you negotiate your contracts, and we do away with all bonuses. That’s what I’m thinking about doing.”
“The bonuses are something we’ve been doing out of the kindness of our f–king heart,” White said. “It was something we liked to do. Apparently, people don’t like it. They want the lower-level guys to get paid more money.”
Yes, that is exactly what people want. They HATE the bonus system and totally want it to be scrapped. My God this Dana White with his false equivalences.
“We’re more like Major League Soccer, as far as financials go,” he said. “You fight three times a year, you make [$50,000 to show and $50,000 to win], you’re making $300,000 a year fighting three times a year. I know you have to take jiu-jitsu and do all these other things, but we have the same thing. We don’t just put on fights; we have overhead, too.
“All these f–king morons have no idea what goes into this and what it takes to build a sport and a company at the same time. And we’ve been very fair to guys.”
No one is complaining about the 50k/50k guys – it’s more the starters who are literally going broke trying to make it in the UFC. Yes, the UFC spends a lot of money on overhead – staff and marketing and all that jazz. It’s one of the big differences between them and boxing and why our sport is looking so healthy in comparison. But that being said, I don’t know how you can spent a million plus bucks a month on a giant advertisement in Times Square yet not be willing to spend a bit more so your new fighters can afford to concentrate solely on their UFC careers.
Just some rough numbers here – if the UFC doubles starting fighter pay from 8k/8k to 15k/15k, that’s an extra million bucks a year. The UFC makes around 15 million bucks per baseline 300k buy pay per view, so that’s not a very large chunk of the pie. To pretend that the company can’t afford it or would have to move money out from another area of fighter pay is pretty bullshit. But if they want to change one of the ways they pay fighters, how about just making it so a fighter makes 16k straight up instead of 8k/8k? The whole 50/50 show / win thing sucks and and deserves to be tossed in the trash of out of date ideas way more than the bonus money thing.