UFC responds to McMann about gender equality

May 28, 2015

The UFC has issued a statement in light of the comments made by Sara McMann stating that the pending UFC-Reebok sponsorship deal is disproportionately unfair to women fighters.

Via MMA Fighting:

“The new UFC Athlete Outfitting Policy (AOP) equally recognizes each athlete’s tenure in UFC, as well as any bout appearances in the WEC and Strikeforce for the period those organizations were under the Zuffa, LLC ownership. Women fighters with limited bouts under the tenure model are treated the same as other experienced men or women new to UFC from other organizations not included in the tenure model. This new policy was designed to provide an equal opportunity for both men and women in each tenure tier. In addition, the champions and challengers, regardless of tenure, will be equally compensated under the AOP for their bouts, something few other sports can claim.”

Payout Perspective:

The interesting part about this Reebok deal is that if the UFC kept the policy based on the media rankings and the pay were the same across the board for men and women divisions, Zuffa would not be facing a potential gender discrimination lawsuit.  Even though a company policy may not be discriminatory on its face, if the application of the policy results in a disparate impact upon a protected class (i.e., women), then the policy may be a civil rights violation.  While the UFC’s statement does not harm its position, it is not persuasive either.  Civil rights lawsuits are expensive, take time and are hard to prove.  Still, the threat of litigation has to have Zuffa concerned.

16 Responses to “UFC responds to McMann about gender equality”

  1. saldathief on May 28th, 2015 11:18 PM

    This deal is great!!! now fighters can get paid in sneakers and leotards !!! bahahahahahahhaha

  2. JF on May 29th, 2015 6:54 AM

    I believe the UFC has complete gender equality; both men and women get exploited the same.

  3. d on May 29th, 2015 7:15 AM

    Sal gets paid in diapers and food stamps.

  4. saldathief on May 29th, 2015 8:40 AM

    Of course the UFC has gender equality, but this is what happens when you let twats have a platform!!

  5. d on May 29th, 2015 9:15 AM


  6. Robert Joyner on May 29th, 2015 12:17 PM

    glad you mentioned disparate/adverse impact, Jason…. lot of folks commenting that Sara doesn’t have a leg to stand on when they don’t really have a grasp of what they are even talking about….there may not have been an intent there by UFC to discriminate, but the law doesn’t really care if the end product ends up unfairly impacting one protected set or subset…UFC need to do some kind of re-configuring in order to make this policy fair to protected classes of fighters….Like the folks on here complaining about Title IX, it is the law, whether you care for it or not, and the UFC seemingly ignoring it on the Reebok deal may be at there own peril….

  7. BrainSmasher on May 29th, 2015 3:31 PM

    The problem is Robert that the same weight class among the males have the same issue as the woman. The lighter male divisions come in right before the woman. Granted there was a larger male presence in WEC. But many of the 135 men have few fights also.

  8. BrainSmasher on May 29th, 2015 3:52 PM

    For example: the UFC 125 men’s division has 8 of its current top 10 in the first two tiers of the reebok pay scale, 1-10 fights. 4 of the 10 are in the first tier which is the same tier as McMann.

  9. Random Dude on May 29th, 2015 5:42 PM

    “Weight” whether underweight or overweight people, are not a federally protected class, so the lower weight classes do not have the same issue.

    Plus Zuffa owned the WEC which also did not allow female fighters but allowed the lower weight class males. The WEC fights count as credit towards the number of UFC fights.

    You add in Dana’s drama with Loretta Hunt and other anti-women stuff he has said in the past and a lawsuit is certainly viable here. At a minimum, it will be expensive to defend.

  10. BrainSmasher on May 30th, 2015 12:08 AM

    What are you talking about with weight? Zuffa has a male division with the same limited history as the female division that is getting paid based on the same structure. There is no grounds for discrimination directly or indirectly!

  11. Robert Joyner on May 30th, 2015 7:29 AM

    you are not getting the point, Brain Smasher. men as a group are spread amongst all spectrums of compensation in this Reebok plan. every single woman in the ufc is relegated into the bottom two tiers of the plan (bar the champions). the plan adversely impacts the whole of female fighters in a way that is not true of the men. that is why it is discriminatory… that may not have been the plan, but that is the end product of this compensation scheme.

  12. saldathief on May 30th, 2015 10:31 AM

    hahah the UFC just keeps digging holes !!!!

  13. Combo on May 30th, 2015 2:53 PM

    And yet one of it’s biggest stars is a woman.
    And Paige Van Zant got a Reebok deal after only one UFC fight. Did any of the male fighters?.
    LOL at UFC gender discrimination.

    The whole point of basing pay on tenure is to sponsor those with the most exposure/recognition and success. That’s how marketing and endorsements work. You can’t just pay fighters with less fights the same as more experienced fighters, man or woman.

  14. tops E on May 30th, 2015 3:13 PM

    Hahahaha…funny dw its not just cash hahahahahaha…reebok pump? hahahaha cheap cheap cheap

  15. tops E on May 30th, 2015 3:14 PM

    Kinda like jon jones gatorade deal hahaha

  16. Andy on May 31st, 2015 10:39 PM

    One out of every 9 UFC fighters is a woman, but only 1 out of every 12 fights is a women’s fight. That is where the inequality lies..

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