White: Performance bonuses may be scrapped to increase fighter base pay


UFC president Dana White says he and ZUFFA SEO Lorenzo Fertitta have discussed getting rid of bonuses to pay lower-level fighters a higher base salary.

Case Keefer from the Las Vegas Sun has the story.

UFC fighters may no longer have a chance to earn extra cash with Fight of the Night, Knockout of the Night and Submission of the Night bonuses.

Frustrated with the recent outcry over minimal wages for non-marquee fighters, White said the UFC was considering getting rid of the bonus system in order to pay preliminary-card participants a bigger base salary.

“The bonuses were something we’ve been doing out of the kindnesses of our (expletive) hearts,” White said. “That’s not something that was ever done or structured. We started doing it and that was it. It was something we liked to do, thought it was a cool thing to do. Apparently people don’t like it. They want the lower-level guys to get paid more money.”

Asked to clarify if this was really a move the promotion could make in the not-so-distant future, White answered emphatically.

“(Expletive) yeah, it could happen,” White said. “That’s what I’m thinking about doing. All the (expletive) lower-level guys think they need their money boosted. Everyone thinks it’s not enough money, so that’s easy to do.”

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tags: Dana White   UFC   


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Recent Comments »

CindyO site profile image  

7/4/13 7:23 PM by CindyO

Can you post, PM, or e-mail me one so I can take a gander, Mace?   Cindy

luctaro site profile image  

7/4/13 7:50 AM by luctaro

Macedawgg thank you for adding to this discussion some interesting bits, tohugh I dont really know if anyone can ague that mma deals arent more restrictive than boxing ones.And if someone points to the fact that the fighters have a godd steady income because they "belong" to an organization, there are big promoters too in boxing and there have always been.

in before 11er site profile image  

7/4/13 7:37 AM by in before 11er

well ur statement would be true if the UFC wouldnt be a monopoly..

Macedawgg site profile image  

7/4/13 7:00 AM by Macedawgg

More language from UFC promo deal: 2.6 Fighter acknowledges and agrees that Fighter shall have no right of approval or consultation with respect ZUFFA's exercise of any Rights granted or assigned to it hereunder and nothing in this Agreement shall obligate ZUFF A to exercise any of its Ancillary Rights. 3.3 Fighter shall cooperate and assist in the advetiising, publicity, and promotion of (i) the Bouts, (ii) any and all rebroadcast of the Bouts in any media whatsoever, (iii) other UFC bouts, (iv) other UFC events and broadcasts, and (v) the sale of UFC merchandise, including making appearances at a reasonable number of press conferences, interviews and other sponsorship and promotional activities (any of which may be telecast, broadcast, recorded or filmed) at times and places reasonably designated by ZUFFA, without additional compensation therefore. For such promotional activities, ZUFFA will arrange and pay for Fighter's reasonable travel, hotel and meal accommodations.  

Macedawgg site profile image  

7/4/13 6:44 AM by Macedawgg

Here is language from a boxing promo deal: In addition to the right to exploit the footage, the deal will say:  "Promoter and its licenssees shall have the right and may grant to others the right to reproduce, print publish, electronically trasmit or disseminate in any medium the name, portrait, likeness, voice and boigraphical material concerning the FIGHTER for the sole purpose of advertising and/or promoting and/or exploiting the bouts. . . and as news or information. . ."  bolded for emphasis. Here is just a portion of the UFC language in the promotional agreement, which does not include the seperate Merchandising Agreement, which is also mandatory: "f.  The unrestricted right to use, edit, disseminate, display, reproduce, print or publish in any media the Identity of Fighter for the purpose of advetiising, promotion, publicity, merchandising and exploitation of the UFC brand, the Bouts, the Pre-Bout Events and Post-Bout Events, including the use of the Identity of Fighter to advetiise any commercial product or service of a ZUFFA sponsor or any network, station or other exhibitor, for which activities Fighter hereby waives his personal right of privacy. g. The unrestricted right to use, edit, disseminate, display, reproduce, print, publish and make any other uses of the Identity of Fighter in connection with the development, manufacturing, distribution, marketing or sale of any and all interactive devices, home video and computer games, arcade video games, hand held versions of video games, video slot machines, CD-ROMS, DVDs, Internet applications, wireless, video and audio cassettes and disks, apparel (such as t-shitis, hats and jackets), banners, buttor1s, posters, jewelry, photographs, souvenirs, programs, toys, merchandising tie-ups and advetiisements, and any and all other similar type products, including the sleeves, jackets and packaging for such products, hereunder made by any method now known or hereafter devised. Additionally, Fighter acknowledges the existence of UFC Video Games (as defined herein) developed, being developed or to be developed by various companies, including, but not limited to, Electronic Atis Inc. Fighter futiher acknowledges that the Rights granted herein to ZUFF A shall be exclusive with respect to any UFC Video Game, and any derivatives of such video games created by ZUFF A or its licensees. "UFC Video Game" shall mean any video game created by Zuffa or its licensees and branded with UFC, Pride, WEC, Strikeforce or any brand subsequently developed, owned or acquired by ZUFF A or any of its agents orsubsidiaries. ZUFF A acknowledges and agrees that Fighter shall be paid a bonus, as determined in the sole discretion of ZUFF A, for each console version of a UFC Video Game in which Fighter appears."

time traveling 12er site profile image  

7/4/13 6:20 AM by time traveling 12er

You don't think so? There are tons of boxers out there and it seems like it takes a hell of a lot more scraping and bleeding to make any money in the sport. It sounds like you work in boxing, you don't think it's harder to make it as a boxer than it is in MMA? Most MMA veteran records look like beginner Boxer records. I think if they had the choice between fighting for next to nothing for 30 fights before you may any money because there's no central orgs, to being able to make it to the big show after a 5 fight streak, I think they would take the latter. I think boxers would rather have an entity constantly generating shows for them to work in rather than leaving it up to promoters to figure things out whenever. I think Boxers would like an organization that tries to push the sport further than one card at a time.Boxing does seem way more free though. I guess you could argue that one on one sports like tennis, mma, and golf work better in this format. Unfortunately MMA doesn't have the sponsors to support it.

Macedawgg site profile image  

7/4/13 6:18 AM by Macedawgg

Oh boy--the difference is all the other things that are assigned in MMA. The right to use likeness on products, for sponsors, advertisers, to license the likeness to third parties, to create toys and action figures, video games, to require the athlete to make appearances to third parties, etc.  In boxing, the assignment is to allow the promoter to exploit the broadcast footage--that's it.  No other consent to use the athlete likeness.

time traveling 12er site profile image  

7/4/13 6:09 AM by time traveling 12er

So then what is the difference? Do boxers get the re-air rights after the fight? What's the main differences other than video games between the Boxing likeness right contracts and the UFC ones? I know the difference between the Bellator one and the UFC one is that Bellator continues to own the right to use your likeness for things you do outside of bellator and the event. (Or something along those lines.) Does the UFC retain the right to keep you from working on a different show after you leave or to footage of your fights in other orgs or something along those lines? I keep hearing how horrible it is and I'm curious as to what the issue is.

Macedawgg site profile image  

7/4/13 5:42 AM by Macedawgg

The right to use the broadcast--yes.  That is the extent of the assignment.

time traveling 12er site profile image  

7/4/13 5:39 AM by time traveling 12er

Don't they sign away the likeness rights for that fight? Or do they always own footage of that fight? Could the conceivably pull consent to air the fight since they own their own likeness?I find it hard to believe there isn't wording in the contract that allows the entity broadcasting the event the rights to their likeness. I think even on sports game ticket stubs, by buying the ticket I believe you're giving them rights to your likeness for the venue and team to use as they see fit. You seem to know a lot about these contracts, is there really nothing there?I'm not sure what the big deal is with likeness rights anyways. They have the right to the footage they shoot of you during the fight. It seems pretty standard to sports, unless there's something more to it. It's not like Bellator where they own your likeness even after you leave them and do something else. As far as I know the only special thing is for video games. Even then there's so little money in it that it's almost a moot point. I'd be curious to hear how much a fighter got paid in EA MMA vs what fighters were paid (if anything) in the UFC games. I've been in on video game recording sessions with actors for licensed games and 99% of the time they complain how they're not getting paid shit for it. And this is for both voice work and likeness usage, not just their faces and names. In fact most of the time they beg for copies of the game when it releases since it often isn't given out unless specifically in the contract.