March 8, 2017
In an interview with Ariel Helwani on The MMA Hour this past Monday, Tony Ferguson sounded dejected and indicated that he had yet to receive his show money of $250,000 as disclosed by the Nevada State Athletic Commission. It appears he’s still waiting for it.
MMA Junkie reports that Ferguson received less than half his contracted UFC 209 show money.
Ferguson was to face Khabib Nurmogomenov in a battle for the interim lightweight title. However, Khabib faced issues with the weight cut and pulled out of the fight on the Friday before the fight.
Ferguson still weighed in and made weight for the fight. So, he did everything right.
Word got out that Michael Johnson was offered up to Ferguson but he would not be paid as much as his bout agreement with Khabib. It made sense to pass from a business perspective as there was more to lose than to gain.
The latest now is that Ferguson received “less than half” the disclosed $250,000 show purse. Ferguson noted that he spent more on training expenses due to the magnitude of the fight. He now is upset with the company. A UFC official told MMA Junkie that Ferguson was aware of what he would be paid after the bout was canceled. Thus, the pay should have been known to Ferguson.
This is one of the horrible parts of the business side of fighting. The UFC valued Ferguson based upon the interim title fight with Khabib and thus his pay was increased to reflect this. Once the fight was off, the pay decreased. Unfortunately, this means that there was nothing in the contract which made assurances or guarantees to Ferguson that he would be paid show money if the fight did not take place. It would seem that making weight would be contractual and there would be repercussions or alternatives is a fighter does not make weight. Yet, looking at boxing and a standard boxing bout agreement between Deontay Wilder and Alexander Povetkin (a fight that did not take place due to issues related to drug testing), there are no clauses related to whether or not a fighter does not make the required weight.
This is bad PR for the UFC as the least it could do was to compensate Ferguson for holding up his end of the fight. Yet, it appears that there’s nothing illegal about the UFC’s pay to Ferguson.
March 5, 2017
ESPN’s Brett Okamoto obtained the salaries for Saturday night’s UFC 209. The salaries, disclosed by the Nevada Athletic Commission, reflects some notable six figure paydays.
Due to complications from weight-cutting, Khabib Nurmogemonov lost out on a $500,000 payday. Tony Ferguson was to have made $250,000 to show and another $250,000 to win in the bout that once again never happened.
Other paydays from the main card:
Tyron Woodley $400,000 to show and $100,000 to win
Vs. Stephen Thompson $380,000 to show ($180,000 if he won)
Alistair Overeem $750,000 (no win bonus)
Vs. Mark Hunt $750,000 (no win bonus if he won)
David Teymur $14,000 to show, $14,000 to win
Vs. Lando Vannata $27,000 to show (and $27,000 if he won)
Daniel Kelly $27,000 to show, $20,000 to win
Vs. Rashad Evans $135,000 to show ($150,000 if he won)
Cynthia Carvillo $10,000 to show, $10,000 for win
Vs. Amanda Cooper $17,000 to show ($17,000 if she won)
MMA Junkie confirmed that Ferguson was paid his fight purse of $250,000. Still, it is disappointing that he did not have a chance at the $250,000 to win. He did turned down a fill-in fight due to reports that he would have been paid less than his original contracted fight with Khabib. Hunt and Overeem making $750K each is a little surprising. Hunt made $700,000 at UFC 200. Overeem made $800K in his title chance against Stipe Miocic last September. It is a little interesting that Thompson had an opportunity to make more than Woodley on Saturday.
February 22, 2017
MMA Fighting reports the payouts from Bellator 172 this past Saturday night. The salaries were released by the California State Athletic Commission.
Via MMA Fighting:
- Patricky Freire ($40,000 + $40,000 = $80,000) def. Josh Thomson ($10,000)
- Cheick Kongo ($75,000 + no win bonus = $75,000) def. Oli Thompson ($25,000)
- Anatoly Tokov ($10,000 + $10,000 = $20,000) def. Francisco France($12,000)
- Veta Arteaga ($6,000 + $6,000 = $12,000) def. Brooke Mayo ($8,000)
- Mauricio Alonso ($10,000 + $10,000 = $20,000) def. Josh Koscheck ($75,000)
- James Terry ($3,000 + $3,000 = $6,000) def. J.C. Llamas ($2,500)
- Nikko Jackson ($1,000 + $1,000 = $2,000) def. Cesar Gonzalez ($1,000)
- Juan Cardenas ($1,000 + $1,000 = $2,000) def. Luis Vargas ($1,000)
- Bobby Escalanate ($1,000 + $1,000 = $2,000) def. Anthony Do ($1,500)
- Jeremy Murphy ($1,200 + $1,200 = $2,400) def. Matt Ramirez ($1,800)
- J.J. Okanaovich ($1,500 + $1,500 = $3,000) def. Zach Andrews ($1,500)
- Justin Tenedora ($1,000 + $1,000 = $2,000) def. Roque Reyes ($1,000)
- Martin Sano ($2,000) vs. Diego Herzog ($2,500) ruled majority draw
- Gaston Bolanos ($4,000 + no win bonus = $4,000) def. Abner Perez ($1,000)
- Abraham Vaesau ($1,000 + $1,000 = $2,000) def. Dominic Sumner ($1,000)
Freire, Kongo and Koscheck were the big money earners with each making at least $75,000. Freire earned $80,000 with his win bonus. Notably, no one else made over $20,000. One has to think that Fedor and Mitrione would have also made over $75,000 with Fedor likely making the most for the night. One has to think that Koscheck’s pay might not be commensurate with his skill at this stage in his career.
January 22, 2017
Tito Ortiz made $300,000 in his final fight of his MMA career at Bellator 170 Saturday night. Ortiz defeated Chael Sonnen in the first round of the main event.
Sonnen made $50,000 for his part in the main event.
The California State Athletic Commission disclosed the following payouts for Saturday’s event (via MMA Junkie):
ito Ortiz: $300,000 (no win bonus)
def. Chael Sonnen: $50,000
Paul Daley: $50,000 (no win bonus)
def. Brennan Ward: $50,000
Hisaki Kato: $30,000 (includes no win bonus)
def. Ralek Gracie: $33,000
Emmanuel Sanchez: $40,000 (includes $20,00 win bonus)
def. Georgi Karakhanyan: $24,000
Derek Campos: $34,200 (includes $15,000 win bonus)
def. Derek Anderson: $7,800
Jacob Rosales: $4,000 (includes $2,000 win bonus)
def. Ian Butler: $1,500
Mike Segura: $3,000 (includes $1,500 win bonus)
def. Tommy Aaron: $2,000
James Barnes: $4,000 (includes $2,000 win bonus)
def. Rob Gooch: $2,000
Curtis Millender: $4,000 (includes $2,000 win bonus)
def. Johnny Cisneros: $2,000
Colleen Schneider: $6,000 (includes $3,000 win bonus)
def. Chrissie Daniels: $4,500
Henry Corrales: $28,000 (includes $14,000 win bonus)
def. Cody Bollinger: $2,500
Guilherme Vasconcelos: $24,000 (includes $12,000 win bonus)
def. John Mercurio: $2,000
Keith Berry: $3,000
vs. Kevin Casey: $10,000
Alex Soto: $5,400 (includes $3,000 win bonus)*
def. Demarcus Brown: $2,300
Chinzo Machida: $20,000 (includes $10,000 win bonus)
def. Jamar Ocampo: $1,500
Jalin Turner: $3,000 (includes $1,500 win bonus)
def. Gabriel Green: $2,000
Jack May: $4,000 (includes $2,000 win bonus)
def. Dave Cryer: $2,000
Daniel Rodriguez: $3,075 (includes $1,500 win bonus)
def. Christian Gonzalez: $1,350*
It looks like Tito’s Bellator contract had him making $300,000 per fight if you look back at his other fights with the organization. His last fight in the UFC he earned $250,000. Unfortunately for Christian Gonzalez, he missed weight and had to forfeit a portion of his purse. He was one of the lowest paid fighters on the card which makes it worse. Notably, a pattern of top of the card Bellator fighters with no win bonus and others on the mid-card making a win bonus which is half their show money.
January 17, 2017
MMA Junkie reports the salaries for UFC Fight Night 103 on Sunday. The payouts, disclosed by Arizona Boxing & Mixed Martial Arts Commission, released the payouts totaling $841,000.
Via MMA Junkie:
Yair Rodriguez: $100,000 (includes $50,000 win bonus)
def. B.J. Penn: $150,000
Joe Lauzon: $116,000 (includes $58,000 win bonus)
def. Marcin Held: $20,000
Ben Saunders: $40,000 (includes $20,000 win bonus)
def. Court McGee: $35,000
Sergio Pettis: $54,000 (includes $27,000 win bonus)
def. John Moraga: $28,000
Drakkar Klose: $20,000 (includes $10,000 win bonus)
def. Devin Powell: $10,000
Augusto Mendes: $20,000 (includes $10,000 win bonus)
def. Frankie Saenz: $20,000
Aleksei Oleinik: $48,000 (includes $24,000 win bonus)
def. Viktor Pesta: $10,000
Tony Martin: $32,000 (includes $16,000 win bonus)
def. Alex White: $14,000
Nina Ansaroff: $20,000 (includes $10,000 win bonus)
def. Jocelyn Jones-Lybarger: $10,000
Walt Harris: $24,000 (includes $12,000 win bonus)
def. Chase Sherman: $10,000
Joachim Christensen: $20,000 (includes $10,000 win bonus)
def. Bojan Mihajlovic: $10,000
Cyril Asker: $20,000 (includes $10,000 win bonus)
def. Dmitrii Smoliakov: $10,000
Rodriguez equals Penn’s pay as he also received a Performance Bonus. $150,000 is the same amount Penn received in his last fight against Frankie Edgar in July 2014.
January 1, 2017
The Nevada Athletic Commission has released the full roster of payouts from Friday night’s UFC 207. The total reported pay for the UFC 207 was $4,683,000.
Via MMA Junkie:
Champ Amanda Nunes: $200,000 (includes $100,000 win bonus)
def. Ronda Rousey: $3 million
Champ Cody Garbrandt: $200,000
def. Dominick Cruz: $350,000
T.J. Dillashaw: $200,000 (includes $100,000 win bonus)
def. John Lineker: $43,000
Dong Hyun Kim: $134,000 (includes $67,000 win bonus)
def. Tarec Saffiedine: $40,000
Ray Borg: $30,600+ (includes $18,000 win bonus)
def. Louis Smolka: $37,400+
Neil Magny: $114,000* (includes $47,000 win bonus)
def. Johny Hendricks: $80,000*
Antonio Carlos Junior: $42,000 (includes $21,000 win bonus)
def. Marvin Vettori: $12,000
Alex Garcia: $36,000 (includes $18,000 win bonus)
def. Mike Pyle: $55,000
Niko Price: $24,000 (includes $12,000 win bonus)
def. Brandon Thatch: $22,000
Tim Means: $35,000 (no win bonus since fight ended in a no-contest)
vs. Alex Oliveira: $28,000 (no win bonus since fight ended in a no-contest)
As noted, by Junkie, Hendricks forfeited 20% of his purse ($20,000) for not making weight and Ray Borg forfeited 30% ($5,400) of his purse for not making weight. The percentages were based on the amount that they were over.
Rousey earned a bulk of the disclosed payout with her $3 million salary. It should be noted that Oliveira may want to appeal the decision not to award a win bonus due to the failure to interpret the rules correctly. Hendricks’ failure to make weight is another sign that he may have to recalibrate his training. He did look better in his fight with Magny but his issues with cutting weight a a continued problem.
December 30, 2016
Ronda Rousey will be making $3 million tonight as she returns to the Octagon at UFC 207. The purse was disclosed by the Nevada Athletic Commission.
Brett Okamoto at ESPN reported a portion of the purses including the women’s bantamweight champion, Amanda Nunes. She will be making $100,000 to show and $100,000-win bonus. Okamoto also reports that Nunes will be receiving a PPV upside.
Per NSAC, Ronda Rousey’s disclosed fight purse tonight is $3 million. No win bonus. Amanda Nunes is $100k/$100k.
— Brett Okamoto (@bokamotoESPN) December 31, 2016
Rousey is not receiving a bonus if she wins. She may also be receiving a PPV upside.
In addition, Dominick Cruz will be making $350,000 (no win bonus) in defending his bantamweight title. Cody Garbrandt will make $200,000 (no win bonus). T.J. Dillashaw will make $100,000 ($100,000 win bonus) and his opponent John Lineker will make $43,000 ($43,000 win bonus).
The $3 million is ties her with Conor McGregor for the highest-reported pay for a UFC fighter. Nunes made $100,000 at UFC 200, but no win bonus guarantee. Prior to that, she was made $28K/$28K at UFC 196. Thus, a huge step-up in pay for Nunes this year. The $350K is the same amount Cruz made at UFC 199 when he beat Urijah Faber. Garbrandt made $27K and $27K for his win against Takeya Mizugaki.
December 20, 2016
After a prolonged wait, CM Punk made his professional MMA debut at UFC 203 in September 2016. Punk took on Mickey Gall in a one-sided match which saw Punk do nothing until he tapped to a rear-naked choke.
While there was a UFC title defense by heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic, it was clear that Punk was the headliner. FS1 did a three-part documentary on Punk’s transformation from WWE performer to MMA fighter at the age of 37. He was also a prominent figure on the Embedded episodes leading up to the PPV.
Punk earned $500,000 for his debut fight which was the same amount made by James Toney in his unsuccessful MMA debut against Randy Couture. Punk proved his payout as the PPV buys for UFC 203 were up from a normal PPV rate: 425K-475K PPV buys.
The Punk experiment was backed by the UFC. He was one of the first fighters to train at EXOS. He had a three-part FS1 series leading up to UFC 203 which documented his training. The investment in Punk paid off even if he did not do well against Gall. The PPV drew more than the typical UFC buy rate baseline. While the fans in Cleveland were behind Miocic, he was not the PPV needle mover, it was Punk. One might infer from the buy rate that Punk had a great WWE following.
It will be interesting to see if Punk returns to fight in MMA, whether it is in the UFC or elsewhere. On another note, will Punk speak out about fighters organizing. Surprisingly, he’s not come out with a statement about the possibility. For someone that hated the WWE, he has been mum about what he thinks about fighters organizing in the UFC.
December 18, 2016
Urijah Faber led the roster of fighters in reported disclosed pay at UFC on Fox 22 Saturday night. In his last fight, Faber registered $320,000 for his win over Brad Pickett.
The payouts were released by the California Athletic Commission. Other notable payouts include Paige VanZant making $43,000 to show (and likely $43,000 if she won), Michelle Waterson earning $30,000 ($15K/$15K) and Sage Northcutt earning $60,000 for his losing effort against Mickey Gall. Gall earned $20k/$20K for his fight against Northcutt.
Via MMA Junkie:
Michelle Waterson: $30,000 (includes $15,000 win bonus)
def. Paige VanZant: $43,000
Mickey Gall: $40,000 (includes $20,000 win bonus)
def. Sage Northcutt: $60,000
Urijah Faber: $320,000 (includes $160,000 win bonus)
def. Brad Pickett: $40,000
Alan Jouban: $54,000 (includes $27,000 win bonus)
def. Mike Perry: $14,000
Paul Craig: $20,000 (includes $10,000 win bonus)
def. Luis Henrique da Silva: $14,000
Mizuto Hirota: $34,000 (includes $17,000 win bonus)
def. Cole Miller: $33,000
Colby Covington: $54,000 (includes $27,000 win bonus)
def. Bryan Barberena: $20,000
Alex Morono: $30,000 (includes $15,000 win bonus)
def. James Moontasri: $16,000
Josh Emmett: $28,000 (includes $14,000 win bonus)
def. Scott Holtzman: $17,000
Leslie Smith: $50,000 (includes $25,000 win bonus)
def. Irene Aldana: $12,000
Eddie Wineland: $58,000 (includes $29,000 win bonus)
def. Takeya Mizugaki: $39,000
Hector Sandoval: $24,000 (includes $12,000 win bonus)
def. Fredy Serrano: $12,000
Sultan Aliev: $20,000 (includes $10,000 win bonus)
def. Bojan Velickovic: $12,000
We shouldn’t be surprised with the pay of PVZ or Sage. Regardless of what you think of their talents at this point, both are considered draws by the company. PVZ was coming off of a win over Bec Rawlings and her fame from ABC’s Dancing with the Stars. Sage won at UFC 200 (where he earned $50K/$50K). Faber was coming off of a loss at UFC 203 and earned $160,000 in that fight. So, his payout here was the same as it was this past September.
December 5, 2016
MMA Junkie reports the TUF 24 Finale payouts from Saturday’s event from The Palms. Flyweight champion Demetrious Johnson led the payouts as disclosed by the Nevada State Athletic Commission.
The disclosed total payout was $1,242,000. Johnson earned $350,000 with no win bonus.
Champ Demetrious Johnson: $350,000 (no win bonus)
def. Tim Elliott: $100,000
Joseph Benavidez: $140,000 (includes $70,000 win bonus)
def. Henry Cejudo: $50,000
Jorge Masvidal: $120,000 (includes $60,000 win bonus)
def. Jake Ellenberger: $78,000
Jared Cannonier: $24,000 (includes $12,000 win bonus)
def. Ion Cutelaba: $12,000
Sara McMann: $56,000 (includes $28,000 win bonus)
def. Alexis Davis: $27,000
Brandon Moreno: $24,000 (includes $12,000 win bonus)
def. Ryan Benoit: $15,000
Ryan Hall: $34,000 (includes $17,000 win bonus)
def. Gray Maynard: $51,000
Rob Font: $33,000 (includes $16,500 win bonus)
def. Matt Schnell: $10,000
“Maestro” Dong Hyun Kim: $20,000 (includes $10,000 win bonus)
def. Brendan O’Reilly: $12,000
Jamie Moyle: $20,000 (includes $10,000 win bonus)
def. Kailin Curran: $20,000
Anthony Smith: $30,000 (includes $15,000 win bonus)
def. Elvis Mutapcic: $16,000
Devin Clark: $20,000 (includes $10,000 win bonus)
def. Josh Stansbury: $12,000
A nice raise in payment for Johnson who made a show purse of $135,000 at UFC 197. He made $60,000 as a win bonus against Henry Cejudo this past April for a total of $195,000. The $350,000 matches that made by bantamweight champion Dominick Cruz in his last title defense at UFC 199. The $350,000 is still less than the $500,000 made by champs like Daniel Cormier and Robbie Lawler (when he held the title). Heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic made $600,000 for his last title defense in September. Of course, it’s not even close to Conor McGregor’s purse. Tim Elliott likely made the most out of any TUF winner in their first fight outside of the show with $100,000 to fight the champ.