Rampage: UFC fighters are getting taken advantage of
Quinton “Rampage” Jackson not longer has a contract with the UFC, and his future appears undetermined at this point. He could negotiate a new contract with the UFC, could go fight for another MMA promotion, could get work on hollywood, and more.
If his goal is to return to UFC, he is not trying to get there by ingratiating himself with the company. In a recent interview with MMA H.E.A.T. co-founder Karyn Bryant, Rampage took issue with reported PPV buy rates. (17:33 mark)
“In my opinion, and this is all my opinion, I feel like me and the rest of the UFC fighters are getting taken advantage of,” said Jackson. “I feel like the UFC is cleaning house. The pay-per-view dollars? They tell me one number. But then they tell the press one number.
“Pay me the numbers that you tell the press. Don’t tell me, ‘Oh, we only sold this many,’ then you tell the press, ‘Oh we sold this many.’
“Then I’m like, ‘Hey, you told me we sold 800,000 buys, but you told the press you sold like a million buys.’ Then they say ‘Oh, we just say that for the press.’
“No, pay me what you told the press, because you’re lying somewhere. You’re either lying to me or you’re lying to the press about the pay-per-view numbers. If they’re doing it to me, I’m sure they’re doing it to other fighters.
“We put in the work. I’m the one who trains every day, hurt. Something hurts every day.”
However, the company is on public record as saying the PPV numbers can be audited.
In January ESPN released a controversial piece on fighter pay. When a preview article by Josh Gross was published just prior to UFC 142, UFC President Dana White announced that the interview with UFC co-owner/chairman/CEO Lorenzo Fertita was in turn video taped by the UFC as a preventive measure against misleading editing.
“If the fighter wants to know, they have buy rate rights,” said Fertitta on the unaired portion of the interview. “Guys who get a back end of the PPV can walk right in the office right here. In fact, they can bring in an accounting team, and they can go through the whole thing. We’re not hiding anything from anybody. It’s just that were don’t publish it for everybody to see. Were not a public company. There’s no reason for us to do that. Once again, a lot of the fighters don’t want people to know how much money they make because believe me, it would make their lives a lot more difficult.”