While there is debate over whether the compensation is fairer in MMA or in boxing, the example of Buakaw, the world's greatest Thai style fighter, shows that in some sports, the compensation is horrific.
Last week Buakaw disappeared from his training camp for over a week, with his family unaware of his whereabouts. Now, in a Thai language interview, a worried Buakaw obliquely refers to the abusive conditions under which he fights for the gym Por.Pramuk, as detailed by fightsportasia.com.
The K-1 MAX legend and Lumpinee International Fighter of the Year speaks out in this shock interview, in which he candidly reveals that he wanted to retire in 2009, but Por.Pramuk would not allow him to. He also mentions wanting to go out and enjoy himself more, and that he has had many problems within the gym regarding training and other issues, but that the gym “make problems for him”, and strong arm him into training more and backing down regardless of the issue at hand.
It was insinuated throughout the interview that Buakaw had been threatened. At the very least, that he has been forced into acquiescence by Por.Pramuk for years upon years, the gym in which he lives in a room with three other men.
Any questions asked about money, it should be noted that Buakaw quietly avoided answering, instead telling us that he’s suffered recurring injuries. It has long been known that Por.Pramuk have taken the lions share of all Buakaw’s fight purses; the strongest rumour being that when he won 1 million yen (about US $12,000) for the K-1 World MAX, that he only received 20,000 (about US $200) of it and that the rest went directly to Por.Pramuk who ‘bought four houses’, among other subsequent expenditures.
It should be noted that while Buakaw avoids responding to questions about money, he has never denied that his gym take the lions share of his earnings.
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