Michael Rome has a unique take on the current UFC / AKA showdown:
I think the topic of whether the UFC’s deal is morally deficient has been discussed to death. Personally, I feel it is unnecessarily heavy handed. However, the real issue for Fitch and other AKA fighters is their representation. It’s mind-boggling to me that anyone would advise a fighter not to sign away video game rights when it could cost them their entire MMA career.
To be honest, losing one fight in the UFC will cost Fitch more than he will ever make in a video game. He made over $250,000 for his fight against GSP when you include sponsors, and $169,000 from the UFC alone. How much is he going to make off video game rights? Not to mention the contract is highly questionable and likely unenforceable anyway.
Rome has a point: while I think we all agree that the whole situation is insane, the key thing is the UFC putting their foot down and AKA calling their bluff. Only the UFC wasn’t bluffing, and now AKA is out on it’s ass. Sherdog is reporting that both parties are talking again so there’s a chance this whole thing will blow over in the next week or two.
Sure, it’s scary that the UFC is using it’s position to play the hardest game of hardball yet. But it’s also insane that these fighters’ agent had the UFC point blank tell them it was sign or go, and the agents said they’d rather go. If you’re gonna stand up to the UFC over some unfair shit, why not stand up for something meatier? Accepting all the release clauses and sponsor restrictions is already akin to getting fucked in the ass. And now they’re crying because Dana came on their back and they think that’s disrespectful?