Fertitta: Rousey makes millions per fight


ZUFFA CEO Lorenzo Fertitta recently attended the Leaders Sports Breakfast at the Cafe Royal in London, on the changing landscape of sport.

Fertitta discussed differences between the pay structure in MMA vs. that in boxing. In boxing, the main event gets all the money and all the attention, so much so that the arena will be empty during the prelim bouts. In MMA, it is more spread out, but those at the top still make millions.

"Our pay structure is actually better," said Fertitta. "We stack back these cards, right, and spread the money over the entire card. That's why you'll see at the O2 (Arena) people will show up at 4:00 or 5:00 in the afternoon, to watch the entire card. If you go to a Mayweather fight, the arena is empty until Mayweather steps into the arena to fight. 


"So it's a different concept, it's a different way of looking at things, and at the end of the day, we're providing a platform where we've got fighters that range from the guys we're giving an opportunity to on the undercard, making 20, 30, 40 thousand dollars a night, to guys that are superstars like George St-Pierre, Anderson Silva, making four or five million a night. 


"And then we have an incredible athlete like Ronda Rousey, who is the highest paid female athlete in the history of combat sports, who is literally making millions of dollars per fight."


"Our revenue share is very similar to those other leagues that exist."

(46:30 mark)


tags: UFC   Lorenzo Fertitta   Ronda Rousey (detail)  


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kalt site profile image  

3/13/14 11:29 PM by kalt

Ohhhhhhhhh but they all get handed secret "can't talk about it" stacks of hundred dollar bills in the locker room after the fight. The UFC says they pay them $8k or whatever, because bad press about shitty fighter pay is good for the company, but they really pay them millions of dollars per fight. It's a secret though.

pk7tanner site profile image  

3/13/14 11:26 PM by pk7tanner

Sorry I just saw your post. I don't know the exact details of their finances, but even the more successful ones that are married and have kids, their wives still work. They're all getting by in my book. To me, comfort is when the house is paid for and you're looking for ways to invest your money. Living comfortably can be an illusion due to the use of credit and the feast or famine periods.

dannyglover site profile image  

3/12/14 4:03 PM by dannyglover

I guess there is competition for her services. I mean I don't see Invicta or whatever other WMMA bushleagues paying her millions per fight. I more so see it as her being a solo star of a novelty fad Zuffa is trying to promote/cash in on. It is what it is, but it also sucks badly as it's still real to me damnit.

Media Monster site profile image  

3/12/14 2:37 PM by Media Monster

Lorenzo is such a boss... I wish I had his cool, calm demeanor.

ophusker site profile image  

3/12/14 2:30 PM by ophusker

Well it is what it is. There is competition for her services where as there is basically no competition for the services of the majority of the fighters on their roster. It goes to show you what competition can do for this type of stuff and goes to show you that the fighters need to form a Union. This kind of inequalities don't happen in other sports leagues. The athletes are paid relevant to their abilities on the field.

Silverball site profile image  

3/12/14 2:21 PM by Silverball

"As a result of the AFL-NFL merger, the National Football League was also given exemptions in exchange for certain conditions, such as not directly competing with college or high school football. However, the 2010 Supreme Court ruling in American Needle Inc. v. NFL characterised the NFL as a "cartel" of 32 independent businesses subject to antitrust law, not a single entity." source: wikipediaIt's relevant because the players via the NFL Players Union were able to increase the average salaries paid to players (and post-season pay) by negotiating/striking for a bigger percentage of the NFL's gross revenues, and bonuses "based on the number of years of experience in the league."But you're right that the difference in terms of revenue between the NFL and the UFC is substantial, not to mention the tax exempt status thing. Examining Dana White's UFC Pay Claims & MLS Comparisons - http://www.bloodyelbow.com/2013/7/8/4503598/examining-dana-whites-ufc-pay-claims-mls-comparisons

dannyglover site profile image  

3/12/14 2:12 PM by dannyglover

Lorenzo is just juiced to the gils eh?It disgusts me that she is making more than pretty much every man to ever participate in MMA. Here Ronda is fighting much smaller opponents, outspending them astronomically on training camps and dolce dieting all with pretty much no risk of head injury. These poor guys who built the sport with their head trauma and actually compelling rivalries are getting so underpaid it's astonishing.

Anthomis site profile image  

3/12/14 1:44 PM by Anthomis

She might make a million with all the movies she shoots, commercials shes in, sponsors she gains etc. Between fight to fight.The UFC isnt even a majority of her income.Because of the UFC she can make all this money. But the UFC isnt writing her biggest checks

12 site profile image  

3/12/14 10:15 AM by 12

“What I always tell these (expletive) guys when they talk about Hollywood. ‘Hollywood, Hollywood.’ When they bring these guys in they don’t pay them jack (expletive) for the movies. They don’t pay them anything to do these movies. They make way more money fighting. She’s getting to a point where her movie money is starting to get close to her (expletive) fight money, already,” said White. so she makes 3 million a movie,why would anyone want to fight,she must have made 9 million this yr

thefightingsheep site profile image  

3/12/14 10:00 AM by thefightingsheep

Sorry, I need a blue name to have the searching capability that most sites provided for free 10 years ago.