Randy Couture: All UFC Fighters Combined Make Less Than Floyd Mayweather

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CantAndleDaRiddum
5/12/08 2:49:21PM
Former UFC heavyweight champ Randy Couture was a guest on the Opie and Anthony Show with, of all people, Pat Cooper, and he discussed payment for mixed martial arts fighters (Warning, foul language):

(Via MMA Mania) When asked if the money is getting better, Couture said, "I think that's one of the things that needs to change in our sport."

Couture then added that every single UFC fighter combined makes less money for all of the organization's pay-per-view shows than Floyd Mayweather makes for one boxing match. (Mayweather is the second-highest-paid boxer in the world; Oscar De La Hoya is first.)

Couture said he has "no beef" with UFC President Dana White, but he just wants to get paid a fair market value for his work and that won't happen while he's under contract to UFC. I think Couture is basically right that the fighters in UFC aren't paid enough, but I also worry that fighters leaving UFC for greener pastures would be good for their short-term financial gain but bad for the long-term health of the sport.

One other interesting note from the interview: When Cooper asked Couture whether his opponents are ever afraid, Couture said, "Some guys are, you can see that."

http://sports.aol.com/fanhouse/2008/04/29/randy-couture-all-ufc-fighters-combined-make-less-than-floyd-ma/
hodge
5/12/08 2:58:24PM
it seems wrong that some fighters in the UFC dont even make enough money to be professionals.
mrsmiley
5/12/08 3:01:30PM
I think a lot of fighters probably deserve more,though I don't want MMA fighters to make as much as Floyd Mayweather.I get sick of hearing how much money he says he has.Be a freaking man and just fight,nobody cares!
thatfedorsohotrightnow
5/12/08 3:08:47PM
Don't listen to all the Zuffa whining about recovering startup costs and what not. All you need to do is look at the gross amount of money that the fighters are paid by the UFC. In all major pro sports the talent/players recieve more than 50% of the gross revenue. In the UFC it is around 5%. All the fighters that bitch about the UFC have a valid arguement.
Also when certain Yahoo writers talk about sponsor money as a reason for why fighters aren't under paid: Hello Peyton Manning's ad money is totally seperate from his salary from the Colts.


50% of gross revenue for fighter pay. It's that simple.
crushedbacon
5/12/08 3:33:34PM
Wow if that 5% is true thats insane....as for the previous comment posted saying 'just be a man and fight ' that's the kind of ideology keeping mma fighters making crap. It's engrained in fight culture to display that mentality, and coincidently reinforcing that idea is financially advantageous for corporations like Zuffa.
wrona666
5/12/08 3:37:35PM
I do believe that a lot of fighters arent making enough money, but to see Couture crying about only making 200k a fight is just rediculous...I dont care what boxers make this isnt boxing and it has not been around as long as boxing so it should not be compared...Same gos with comparing it to other sports that have been around for ages...MMA needs to grow just like all other sports have for it to be able to pay out the large sums of cash....

And if you dont like the pay dont sign the contract or find another line of work.....
iwannabesedated
5/12/08 3:48:48PM

Posted by hodge

it seems wrong that some fighters in the UFC dont even make enough money to be professionals.



Are your serious 15 to 25 minutes and 200 grand...Sign me up.

200K a fight and 3 fights a year is $600,000 Plus enodorsements.Shit with all that i could vote republican and have a trophy wife.
telnights
5/12/08 4:02:04PM
This interview was posted a while ago HERE .

I going to post the same thing I posted then.


Posted by telnights
I'm just tired of hearing from Randy and his BS. The hole $17 mill statement was total BS. I bet you anything Chuck made close to that by himself last year. Randy, Tito, and Chuck together made way more than that last year as all 3 get a cut of the PPVs as does almost all headliners. So if you take all the main events and championship fights last year and take in to account that almost all involved got a small cut of the PPVs you will see they made way over 17 mill. He brings up Floyd Mayweather and the fact he made more than 17 mill for one fight but thats one of the problems with boxing its not a good thing that he is making that kind of money per fight. The day MMA fighters start getting payed that much is the day we start seeing very weak cards with the only top 20 fighters on the card being the main event and us as fans still having to pay $40 to $60 for a PPV.

xburbx
5/12/08 5:05:41PM
This is such a dumb argument. This is beating a dead horse, but why would a company pay employees more than it has to? It makes no sense. As for the boxing comment. Here is the article that puts that stupid comment to rest.

http://sports.yahoo.com/mma/news?prov=yhoo&slug=ki-mmamailbag042908&type=lgns

So shutup Randy and all supporters of the "not enough pay"
cmill21
5/12/08 6:54:50PM
I would like the UFC to prove exactly how much they pay out to fighters including their bonuses and ppv cuts, then we could put all of this to bed. If they are paying 5% of revenue after paying out their bonuses then they should up it, but then guys would have to make a % instead of an actual $ figure which could hurt guys bad if they have a weak card.
bigbubbano23
5/12/08 7:05:40PM

Posted by 40ouncetofreedom


Posted by hodge

it seems wrong that some fighters in the UFC dont even make enough money to be professionals.



Are your serious 15 to 25 minutes and 200 grand...Sign me up.

200K a fight and 3 fights a year is $600,000 Plus enodorsements.Shit with all that i could vote republican and have a trophy wife.



yea that sounds good except for the 3 months of insane physical training and the 50% chance you don't win. you just make it sound so easy.
iwannabesedated
5/12/08 7:23:24PM

Posted by bigbubbano23


Posted by 40ouncetofreedom


Posted by hodge

it seems wrong that some fighters in the UFC dont even make enough money to be professionals.



Are your serious 15 to 25 minutes and 200 grand...Sign me up.

200K a fight and 3 fights a year is $600,000 Plus enodorsements.Shit with all that i could vote republican and have a trophy wife.



yea that sounds good except for the 3 months of insane physical training and the 50% chance you don't win. you just make it sound so easy.



It was a joke man
prozacnation1978
5/12/08 7:41:48PM
i agree, with the live gate being 2 million plus plus pay per view buys where does all the money go??
zephead
5/12/08 7:51:21PM
Randy, cut it out. You used to be the classiest, most humble guy in the sport. Now your sounding like some kid who is taking his tonka toys away from the sand box
candynuts
5/12/08 8:21:46PM
Obviously the UFC is a business from a sport that is just starting to become mainstream. Dana knows he wont be able to please everyone and pay everyone what they think they should be payed, that would be stupid. I would much rather have the UFC fighters pay the way it is now than to have only the cream of the crop get the pay while everyone else gets shit.

Its just a stupid thing for Couture to point out. The Florida Marlins have a team salary (the players) of just under 23 million for about 32 players this year, while you have A-Rod making 28 million this year. A-Rod is making more money than the entire Florida Marlins player salary and that sport is about as mainstream as it gets.

The UFC is working hard to increase fighters pay, but it is a process. The more mainstream the sport gets, the bigger the checks are. Keep improving the product and the pay will come.


jlock003
5/12/08 10:04:32PM
I was sitting at my mom's place yesterday for Mother's day with my step-brother, step-dad, and mom. Somehow we got into a discussion about Michael Jordan and his wife taking 180 million from him in their divorce. My brother was goin ape shit about the deal sayin things like, "She never dribbled not one basketball," or "She ain't never dunked a ball in her life!" I thought it was hilarious, but I started realizing how much money professional athletes really do make, and it's wild. Now wheather Jordan's wife deserved that much money or not can be posted on an MJ webpage LOL, but there is one thing that is certain. MMA fighters today will not be worth the 180 Million that Jordan had to give up, nonetheless the full 360 million that he was worth at the time. BUT, I do think that the time is coming. I understand what Couture is saying, but the guy has been bitching and moaning for a year now about how much money he should make and who he should get to fight. There are several things that the NFL, NBA, and NHL all have in common, I.E. age. The NBA was established in 1946 the NFL was established in 1920 as the AFL and settled on NFL in 1922, and the NHL was established in 1917. The WBA (Original boxing organization) can be traced back to 1921! The UFC was founded in 1993 under its previous ownership and was only bought by ZUFFA in 2001! The first season of the Ultimate Fighter had to be funded for by the Fertitta brothers and aired in January of 05! I mean we are talking about a very young organization and sport for that matter. I mean hell how many states is it sanctioned in? They are just now expanding throughout the US. The UFC is a growing organization, but it takes time to build an empire ya know? I'm not saying the guys aren't underpaid, but I was pretty sure that Liddell's last contract, (The highest one in the UFC) was for 4 fights and paid out 14 mil....it's not mayweather money, but that's not a bad payday. Let's wait and see what happens when they start renegotiating contracts for guys like anderson silva, and especially GSP. Give the UFC another 10-15 years and they will be handing out huge contracts with great paydays. I'm willin to bet that boxing stars, NFL, and NBA athletes didn't start out making the big bucks that they make today. If Couture was in the sport of irritating the hell out of all of his previous fans the guy would be worth billions. Randy, get back in the damn octagon and maybe you'll make a little money! It really is what we all want to see anyway. If you really think you are worth the money....then prove it!
xburbx
5/12/08 10:13:53PM
^^^^^^^^^^^^^

Agreed with a good portion of that. MMA is a growing sport and you are correct that when all other mainstream sports started, the pay was much lower. (That includes taking inflation into account, so dont argue that point). It will just increase with time and competition from other leagues. Randy is a moron. He needs to stick to fighting and not talking. His business sense is clearly not even close to his skills in the ring. Either way, people are realizing how stupid these fighters sound about bitching about their pay. The more fighters bring it up, the more anti fans they will get. The UFC pays better overall than boxing so as I have said before, if fighters want to complain, go find another job.
Pookie
5/12/08 10:17:09PM

Posted by xburbx
The UFC pays better overall than boxing so as I have said before, if fighters want to complain, go find another job.



hate to sound like an ass but your 100% wrong on that one.
thatfedorsohotrightnow
5/12/08 10:39:14PM

Posted by 40ouncetofreedom


Posted by hodge

it seems wrong that some fighters in the UFC dont even make enough money to be professionals.



Are your serious 15 to 25 minutes and 200 grand...Sign me up.

200K a fight and 3 fights a year is $600,000 Plus enodorsements.Shit with all that i could vote republican and have a trophy wife.



So when can we see you in the UFC? You need to stop posting since you never enrich the conversation and only post ignorant disrespectful garbage.
thatfedorsohotrightnow
5/12/08 10:43:56PM

Posted by Pookie


Posted by xburbx
The UFC pays better overall than boxing so as I have said before, if fighters want to complain, go find another job.





Or go find another org not another job. So you are one of those people that say love America or leave it? No you're right Dana and the Fertitas need that money much more than those evil greedy fighters.
Why do people get mad at the idea that the fighters deserve more pay. Is everyone in Dana's will and gets a cut of the Zuffa pie?
jimmypockets
5/13/08 12:22:45AM
You guys keep talking about Randy and fighters making 100 or 200 thousand a fight but that is not who this fight is for. Randy and as much as it pains me Tito, are the only big names standing up for the young fighters. I don't think everyone needs to make millions but to pay one of these porfessional athletes 3,000 dollars a fight is ridiculous. As a fighter you have to suck it up and hope that you can build a solid enough name to force them to pay you more or you leave. If you fight 3 times a year that puts you making 9,000 bucks a year. It is just a shame that you can find Asst. Mgr.'s at your local Foot Locker making double that. I guess the lesson for young fighters is don't lose or you may have to start sellin some shoes.
candynuts
5/13/08 12:39:12AM

Posted by jimmypockets

You guys keep talking about Randy and fighters making 100 or 200 thousand a fight but that is not who this fight is for. Randy and as much as it pains me Tito, are the only big names standing up for the young fighters. I don't think everyone needs to make millions but to pay one of these porfessional athletes 3,000 dollars a fight is ridiculous. As a fighter you have to suck it up and hope that you can build a solid enough name to force them to pay you more or you leave. If you fight 3 times a year that puts you making 9,000 bucks a year. It is just a shame that you can find Asst. Mgr.'s at your local Foot Locker making double that. I guess the lesson for young fighters is don't lose or you may have to start sellin some shoes.




I dont think most UFC fighters (if any at all) only make 3,000 a fight, even as their base salary. Also, most jobs like an Asst. Mgr. at Foot Locker dont give out $60,000 for doing your job well for the day. There is more to it than just the base salary in which they get their income. Not only through sponsorships/ppv sales/ win bonus/ extra bonuses, but also as MA instructors.


However, I would like to this the UFC have non-exclusive contracts to some of the lesser known/ lesser experienced fighters in the UFC.

If fighters get crap pay, they have chances within the UFC to recieve more money.... (Win Bonus/ FOTN bonuses). Which is something most "normal" job professions do not do (Unless you count the $100 X-Mas bonus).

telnights
5/13/08 3:19:45AM

Posted by Pookie


Posted by xburbx
The UFC pays better overall than boxing so as I have said before, if fighters want to complain, go find another job.



hate to sound like an ass but your 100% wrong on that one.



No he is right Pookie the UFC over all pays better. For proof just look HERE.
mrsmiley
5/13/08 5:27:38AM

Posted by crushedbacon

Wow if that 5% is true thats insane....as for the previous comment posted saying 'just be a man and fight ' that's the kind of ideology keeping mma fighters making crap. It's engrained in fight culture to display that mentality, and coincidently reinforcing that idea is financially advantageous for corporations like Zuffa.



Fighters like Jeremy Horn have stated they believe MMA fighters making as much money as Floyd Mayweather would be bad for the sport and change it dramaticly.I'll find the link,it was a youtube video of him and Joe Rogan.But they go on to talk about how if it ever came to that,we would see a lot of atheletes get into the sport for the money,instead of the love of competition.I'm not saying MMA fighters shouldn't make more,but the amount of money Mayweather makes is just ridiculous.

http://youtube.com/watch?v=9_BlX8PmTe0
jgtribbett
5/13/08 7:23:48AM
i've seen this.. but yeah.. i agree with a prior post.
Maybe the top level guys shouldnt complain about what they make (on the contraire, I agree with tito and couture) but if nothing else atleaste pay the lower level guys enough to live off of.
24 grand a year (assuming they do three fights) is not what you would call a Professional athlete.
xburbx
5/13/08 9:18:24AM
Thanks Telnights for linking that above. I think everyone should read that boxing article before any posts are made about paying fighters.
---------------------------------------------------

As far as Jeremy Horn thinking that fighters should fight for the love of the sport, is a great concept, but will never be a reality as the sport grows. Money and greed will always prevail over any other form motivation. I'm also not saying it is a bad thing because who cares what motivates you if you are a talented fighter putting on an amazing fight.

As far as the comment about making only 24k a year goes, I believe that the fighters making 24k a year will one day be making far more as the UFC expands. I also believe that a guy making 24k a year shouldnt be on payroll beyond that 1 year. Guys that put on better fights and are better overall fighters get paid more money. It is a performance base pay system as it should be. If fighters were paid huge dollars, the UFC risks complacency in fighters which is far worse than the current issues at hand.
Aether
5/13/08 9:19:24AM
I agree that MMA fighters are underpaid, but the sport has only hit the mainstream in the last couple of years, so some catch-up is to be expected. With that said, this is just creative use of numbers on Randy's part to make the situation seem a little worse than it is. It's probably an accurate statistic, but you have to consider that no UFC fighter comes close to generating the revenue that mayweather does. In boxing any given event is only about the title fight. If mayweather is fighting it doesn't matter who else is fighting, people are paying to see mayweather, and he alone generates more income than dozens of UFC fighters combined, so he also deserves to be paid a bigger chunk of change.

Again, I agree that MMA fighters are underpaid, but this comment is really a form of propaganda, taking a point that isn't really relevant to his argument about UFC fighters being underpaid and making it seem like it is by omitting key details.
emfleek
5/13/08 9:27:28AM
A contract is a two-way street. If you're not happy with the money, don't sign the damn contract. You're not forced to fight for a prize. You CHOOSE to fight for a prize.

Quit your whining, Randy.
xburbx
5/13/08 9:30:20AM
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
props
browneye
5/13/08 10:00:48AM
Im tired of Randy making a big deal of everything he neeeds to shut up and fight again
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