Will the Ali Act help protect MMA fighters?
May 2, 2016
With the recent news that there will be a proposed amendment to the Muhammad Ali Boxing Reform Act to include MMA fighters, I take a look at boxers that have tried to sue under the Ali Act over at The White Bronco.
The Ali Act which serves to protect boxers from unsavory business practices from the likes of promoters and managers has had a handful of lawsuits where a fighter has sued under the Ali Act. By my estimation there has not been one where a boxer has prevailed. Only in the case of Jeff Lacy (the name may sound familiar as he was the boxer Nick Diaz was allegedly going to box if his MMA career did not continue) was there a favorable finding from the court.
Andre Ward, Joseph Agbeko, Bermane Stiverne and Mikey Garcia are other fighters that have filed suit under the Ali Act but were not successful in court. Of course, in the instances of Ward and Garcia, they were granted releases from their promoters but after extended litigation which sidelined their careers. Stiverne was able to reconcile with his promoter, Don King.
One of the overarching themes in the litigation is the disclosure component of the Ali Act in which requires promoters to disclose its payouts to its fighters. Most recently, Chris Algieri complained about this issue with his longtime promoter.
It will be interesting to see what becomes of the proposed amendment and how much support it receives. While the intent is good, the present Ali Act has its flaws which should be addressed if we are talking about amending the Ali Act. Of course, we may see opposition to the Ali Act by those not wishing that MMA fighters are covered.