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First off I gotta apologize: I’m way behind on news so you’re gonna be seeing some ‘last week’ stuff here. But it’s not like I’m the one cranking out exclusives or anything. You shouldn’t be coming here for cutting edge news, because we’re more like blunt trauma news. Anyways, the Ultimate Fight Night 11 pay figures have been released, and here’s my pithy observations:

  • Luke Cummo drinks his own urine, fights in the dark matches, and *still* makes 10 thousand dollars more than Kenny Florian, who headlined the show.
  • Din Thomas was the highest paid loser on the show, making 16 grand. No word yet on how much it’ll cost to put his knee back together.
  • Nate Diaz made 30k in his win over Junior Assuncao, proving yet again that TUF’s ‘six figure contract’ sounds better than it really is.
  • Kuniyoshi Hironaka has a 10k to fight / 10k to win contract, proving that while no one cares about these random japanese fighters, they’re still getting paid more than random noth american fighters like Leonard Garcia and Jonathan Goulet who only make 6k / 6k.

Normally I hate TUF Fighter diaries … most of them have the same level of insight as a random 12 year old who just watched the episode on Spike. However, I’m all about Mac Danzig’s awesome breakdown because it goes past just a regurgitation of what happened in the episode. For example, he reveals that he was the one who tooled Roman’s elbow (thinning out the competition, huh Mac?). As well, he had this funny insight into Matt Serra’s annoying corner style:

Puzzling to me, was how Serra would yell “good Joey!” during times where Joey was definitly in trouble. It was like he was trying to change the fight through some sort of audible osmosis. Maybe next time I get in a car accident, I’ll just yell “Good!- This is good- great!” and the cars will magically fix themselves- I don’t know what he was thinking.

Hywell Teague, my #1 favorite fight magazine editor, sent me over a link to the above picture of our #2 most hated guy in MMA. Guess who’s #1, Kevin. That’s right: Randy Couture. I’m sick of him and his pompous holier than thou attitude.

But wait, it gets better. The above horrible picture was taken by the very not horrible Esther Lin, who seems to be EliteXC’s general photographer / graphic design chick. And if you want to see more of her work, you can check out her massive Flikr page containing over 1500 pics. It’s definately worth spending a few hours on.

Oh my fucking God:

UFC 76 took place at the Honda Center in Anaheim, Calif. on Saturday, Sept. 22, and featured Keith Jardine’s upset split-decision victory over Chuck Liddell. Jardine earned $14,000 for the victory, and Liddell earned $500,000 in defeat.

In case you were wondering, Liddell earned over 35 times the amount of money Keith Jardine made. Of course, Chuck Liddell is like the Michael Jordan (or Wilt Chamberlain) of the UFC so it makes sense that he gets payed that much. Plus under the table bonuses. Plus UFC-brokered sponsorship money. Plus Dana’s first born child.

On the other hand, Keith Jardine making 14k for his win is simply hilarious. Jardine was an Ultimate Fighter 2 contestant, and he got the same shitty contract the rest of the TUF losers got: 7000 to fight and 7000 to win. That was two years and 7 fights ago. Looking at his record you can balance his salary out at $42,000 a year. For you kiddies still in school, here’s a nice point of reference: Plumbers make $54,000 a year on the low end of the scale.

One would hope that Keith is gonna get a renegotiated contract sometime soon, but for some reason the UFC is weird about stuff like that. Rich Franklin has been stuck on a dog of a contract for years now while Houston Alexander apparently signed a new contract before his first UFC opponent even made it to the hospital. So who knows if Dana White will reward Jardine and up his pay or keep him where he is until the terms of his TUF serfdom expire.

Of course, my bitching could be completely moot. There’s always all this talk of magic money that flows freely under the table and away from the prying eyes of sanctioning bodies. But I don’t have faith in Jesus or God existing, so why should I put faith in the idea of mystical pay either? Until I see definitive proof that the average UFC fighter can afford a mortgage payment, fuck that shit.

Regardless of how dopey he looks with a mariachi mustache, there’s nothing dopey about the idea of a lightweight Diego Sanchez:

“Close isn’t close enough. I’m just going to have to go back to work and get stronger and come back,” said Sanchez. “I’m contemplating in my mind whether I’m going to drop to 55 (155 pounds) or not because I am really a smaller welterweight, but its either that or start powerlifting and get a little stronger because I felt not as strong in there as I should have been.”

In the past I’ve been critical about fighters who drop weight after hitting a few bumps in their current division. I won’t name any names, but I’m talking about Mike Swick. But now I’m starting to think that I’m not against changing weight classes, I’m against changing weight classes into the welterweight division. It’s so fucking stacked in there that it’s impossible to keep a streak going. It’s by far the best weight class in the UFC.

I’d say the lightweight division is probably third on the list, after the Light Heavyweight division. LHW is on the edge of exploding, they’ve got so many big names and star power. Lightweight is the opposite: they’ve got tons of guys with lots of skill, but not any marquee names they can rest the division on. That’s why with Sean Sherk out (soon), who the fuck are they gonna have fight BJ for the vacant belt?

That’ll change in the next year with guys like Spencer Fisher, Kenny Florian, Clay Guida, and Tyson Griffin coming into their own. But for now, a guy like Diego who was two wins away from a title shot at Welterweight could immediately step up to the plate and be ready to challenge for the lightweight belt before the snow melts in Canada this spring. Well, depending on how global warming affects things.

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