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Former Pride Owners Sue Zuffa Holding Companies, Fertittas

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grappler0000

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When Zuffa purchased Pride in March 2007, the MMA world immediately began anticipating the epic battles that would follow. However, the "Super Bowl of MMA" never materialized, and Zuffa ultimately abandoned the Pride brand in October.

Now, one year later, the acquisition appears set to provide the fireworks it initially promised -- only in the court room instead of the cage.

Nobuyuki Sakakibara, Ubon, and Dream Stage Holdings sued Pride FC Worldwide, both the Nevada and Japanese corporate entities, as well as Lorenzo and Frank Fertitta individually on April 2 in U.S. District Court in Las Vegas.

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Post #1   4/7/08 11:03:49AM   

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Zuffa is headed for a fall. People do business with friends. More and more no one wants to do business with Zuffa. Couture will win his suit. I think the Ali act does apply to MMA and will factor into that case. The Arlovski situation really turned me off to the UFC's management. I feel that Dana and Co. run their biz like WWE instead of a sport.
I have a note on fighter pay. All the major sports leagues give the talent a cut of the gross revenue. That cut is over 50%. In the NFL it is close to 60%. These major leagues are permitted to function as monopolies because of their strong unions. So if Zuffa wants to run a monoply I am cool with it as long as the fighters get a major cut of GROSS revenue.
Anyone that wants claim poverty and need to recoup investment on Zuffa's behalf should know that Zuffa can claim poverty till the end of time. The only way to know if they are really still investing is for them to open their books, which will never happen. Those costs are Zuffa's problem.
Until Zuffa starts giving up a significant portion of gross revenue to fighter pay, they will continue to lose big names and be in court on a regular basis. Dana White and Zuffa are robber barons.
I will continue to order The UFC PPV's but my patience and respect for Zuffa are wearing thin. The UFC monoply can't last!

Post #2   4/7/08 12:50:34PM   

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I don't get it. Can a company actually be obligated keep a failing enterprise alive? It sounds like that's what they are arguing. What a load of crap. This will go nowhere.

Last edited 4/7/08 1:11PM server time by scoozna
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Post #3   4/7/08 1:11:07PM   

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I know Zuffa is trying to stay at the top of an industry that is currently experiencing HUGE growth, but I think they really need to settle these issues and deal with the repercussions of their early, slightly shady, dealing before advancing the UFC. They are continually having issues with contract negotiations (ie. Randy), not so "on the level" business relationships (ie. Xyience) and very intricate deals involving their aquisitions (ie. Pride). Zuffa's legal and PR departments needs to focus it's time and energy of resolving these issues, tieing up these loose ends and the re-building the company brand image if it wants to stay at the forefront of this industry. Nobody trusts this organization now, and not even fighters will sign a contract with an organization that they can not trust. Fix the brand, fix the issue.

(and then maybe the UFC will actually obtain guys like Fedor)

Post #4   4/7/08 4:24:40PM   

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Posted by scoozna

I don't get it. Can a company actually be obligated keep a failing enterprise alive? It sounds like that's what they are arguing. What a load of crap. This will go nowhere.




To me there was an agreement that Zuffa would continue with the Pride name. Now, I know where you are coming from, but I think the point of the lawsuit is that Zuffa didn't even make an effort to keep Pride going.

The point of the lawsuit is that Zuffa has acted precisely as if they planned to dismantle Pride from the get-go, which (allegedly) violates the contract signed by Pride and Zuffa.I think that the representatives of Sakakibara are arguing that, had they known that Zuffa was going to violate their contractual agreement, then they would have sold Pride to another buyer for more money.

All in all if the lawsuit goes through, I only see this as a financial set-back for Zuffa and some bad publicity. I can't imagine what the set-back would be, but I would hazard a guess that it is in the realm of the difference between what Zuffa offered for Pride, vs. the "better paying" buyers.

As for publicity, I don't think this will change the image of the UFC, but it might have an effect on how people do business with Zuffa in the future.

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Post #5   4/7/08 5:14:49PM   

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Posted by thatfedorsohotrightnow


I will continue to order The UFC PPV's but my patience and respect for Zuffa are wearing thin. The UFC monoply can't last!



WOW It was almost believable till you finished with that....

Post #6   4/7/08 7:42:06PM   

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Posted by GlancyMMA



(and then maybe the UFC will actually obtain guys like Fedor)



other than Fedor who are the other Guys like him???

Post #7   4/7/08 7:43:32PM   

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Pretty much just a counter suit but I do have one thought, why didn't the UFC keep Pride alive(having all the Pride fighters under contract) and then have some sort of super fight PPV between the two orgs? From my understanding the guys under contract could only fight for Pride (select few were transferable) so why didn't they just keep it? IMHO both lawsuits are pretty dumb.

Post #8   4/7/08 7:49:16PM   

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This case was opened because Zuffa is suing former pride owners. Its normal for a company to counter sue when they are being sued. But I don't think the former pride owners don't have a leg to stand on.


Posted by Kracker_Jap


Posted by GlancyMMA

(and then maybe the UFC will actually obtain guys like Fedor)



other than Fedor who are the other Guys like him???



I'm wondering the same thing.


Posted by cmill21
Pretty much just a counter suit but I do have one thought, why didn't the UFC keep Pride alive(having all the Pride fighters under contract) and then have some sort of super fight PPV between the two orgs? From my understanding the guys under contract could only fight for Pride (select few were transferable) so why didn't they just keep it? IMHO both lawsuits are pretty dumb.



Lot of the contracts weren't even really contracts just verbal agreements (Fedor and a few orthers). Plus Zuffa did try to save Pride the problem was Pride's brand was only truly big over seas and because of the hole connections to the mob thing had tainted the Pride brand name and made Zuffa unable to get a TV deal for Pride in Japan. So Zuffa was told they would be buying Pride plus all of the fighter contracts turned out to basically be just a video library and a company that was driven in to the ground.

Last edited 4/7/08 8:14PM server time by telnights
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Post #9   4/7/08 7:52:49PM   

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Posted by telnights

This case was opened because Zuffa is suing former pride owners. Its normal for a company to counter sue when they are being sued. But I don't think the former pride owners don't have a leg to stand on.



I believe the same for the UFC's suit. IMHO they are both wrong, and neither should win. The UFC's doesn't make sense, considering they are baisically sueing DSE for getting a new job lol, and sueing a company because they coulden't fix your mess doesn't make any sense at all. As for the contract issue, I knew about the verbals, Cro Cop also only uses verbal contracts with the Japanese, but I would like to know exactly who used them and who had paper contracts. I would have brought Pride here, with the ring and the different show they put on, and done Pride vs. UFC with the guys who had contracts.

Post #10   4/7/08 9:43:57PM   

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i kinda figured UFC would have some trouble somewhere along the line..just didntk now where..butanyhow.. ufc era willend..i think .. and the cycle willstart all over again with many promotions and anouther 10 or 15 years will go by and on org will grow to monopolize MMA and then it'll break and cycle again.. or!!! what i hope happens is that MMA makes it into the olympics and every big city or (whatever) have teams.. and tournaments... and yada yada yada

Post #11   4/7/08 9:45:01PM   

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Posted by telnights
This case was opened because Zuffa is suing former pride owners. Its normal for a company to counter sue when they are being sued. But I don't think the former pride owners don't have a leg to stand on.



This makes a lot of sense to me - but what is Zuffa suing the former Pride owners for?

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Post #12   4/8/08 8:58:04AM   

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Posted by cmill21
I believe the same for the UFC's suit. IMHO they are both wrong, and neither should win. The UFC's doesn't make sense, considering they are baisically sueing DSE for getting a new job lol, and sueing a company because they coulden't fix your mess doesn't make any sense at all. As for the contract issue, I knew about the verbals, Cro Cop also only uses verbal contracts with the Japanese, but I would like to know exactly who used them and who had paper contracts. I would have brought Pride here, with the ring and the different show they put on, and done Pride vs. UFC with the guys who had contracts.



They are not suing DSE for getting a new jobs. They are suing them because they were told they had their stars under contract which DSE didn't. Now DSE employees are trying to start a new company that does the same thing after sailing the company under false pretenses. They are trying to pick up those stars that they told Zuffa they had under contract. It would be like buying a sports agents company but him not having any athletes under contract but saying he did. Then him opening a new company as a agent trying to pick up the same people he said he had under contract.



Posted by scoozna
This makes a lot of sense to me - but what is Zuffa suing the former Pride owners for?



Read above.....

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Post #13   4/8/08 7:00:53PM   

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Posted by telnights


Posted by cmill21
I believe the same for the UFC's suit. IMHO they are both wrong, and neither should win. The UFC's doesn't make sense, considering they are baisically sueing DSE for getting a new job lol, and sueing a company because they coulden't fix your mess doesn't make any sense at all. As for the contract issue, I knew about the verbals, Cro Cop also only uses verbal contracts with the Japanese, but I would like to know exactly who used them and who had paper contracts. I would have brought Pride here, with the ring and the different show they put on, and done Pride vs. UFC with the guys who had contracts.



They are not suing DSE for getting a new jobs. They are suing them because they were told they had their stars under contract which DSE didn't. Now DSE employees are trying to start a new company that does the same thing after sailing the company under false pretenses. They are trying to pick up those stars that they told Zuffa they had under contract. It would be like buying a sports agents company but him not having any athletes under contract but saying he did. Then him opening a new company as a agent trying to pick up the same people he said he had under contract.




Well that doesn't make sense because Sakikibara is listed as a defendant and he's involved with soccer lol. I understand the point about the contracts, I haven't heard that was part of the suit though.

Post #14   4/8/08 7:08:52PM   

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Posted by cmill21
Well that doesn't make sense because Sakikibara is listed as a defendant and he's involved with soccer lol. I understand the point about the contracts, I haven't heard that was part of the suit though.



Thats why he is part of the suit is because of the contracts. I know he cant control his old employees but the company was very much sold to Zuffa under false pretenses then the major part of DSE's x-work force to start another company doesn't look good. I'm bet you anything a judge will see it the same way and Dream will end up being just that.

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Post #15   4/8/08 7:24:18PM