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UnderGround Forums >> Hughes: How can guys complain about their pay?


7/19/13 10:58 AM
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Underground Blog
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MixedMartialArts.com
 

Fighter pay has been a hotly debated topic as of late. Some ex-UFC fighters and current fighters have aired their grievences publicly and support have also come to the support of their employeer. Matt Hughes now serves as the UFC Vice President of Athletic Development and Government Relations, and of course was a former world champion. His take on the issue:

"You go back to when I first started. These guys are making as much now as I did when I won the belt," Hughes said. "How can these guys complain about their pay? I don't understand it. I really don't.

"Most of the guys that complain are guys who have been kicked out of the UFC. Like (Jon) Fitch. I like Fitch. I'm not talking bad about him, but I'm going to tell the truth. If people didn't buy a ticket or buy a pay-per-view to watch him fight, then what good is he? A lot of people found him extremely boring. And so he got let go, and he's not happy about it. But the facts are the facts."

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7/19/13 11:02 AM
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Zaph
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"When I was a lad, I had to walk to school barefoot, uphill, and in three feet of snow." Phone Post
7/19/13 11:03 AM
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Whambo
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So because he didn't make much when the UFC was struggling means UFC salaries should stay stagnant forever?

Matt Hughes was one of Dana's buddies, and he got the buddy treatment. Not everyone is so lucky. I doubt Tito ever got a $1 million bonus after one of his fights.
7/19/13 11:03 AM
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GMan99
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I don't like or agree with this notion, "If people aren't buying a PPV or a ticket to the event because of you, then what are you worth?" but it is being cited frequently of late.

I think this kind of thinking is what has diminished my inclination to buy PPVs. It used to be that you had a balanced card where you were interested in buying the card as a whole. Now, they have become so main event driven, and the rest of the card frequently seems like filler.

I think that if someone is a good fighter, in an interesting matchup, they contribute to my overall desire to buy the card. If there is a good main event, but a lackluster rest of the card, then I am reluctant to buy because what if the main event is disappointing?
7/19/13 11:03 AM
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Ip Man 81
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Zaph - "When I was a lad, I had to walk to school barefoot, uphill, and in three feet of snow." Phone Post
Uphill both ways Phone Post 3.0
7/19/13 11:07 AM
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Ip Man 81
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Whambo - So because he didn't make much when the UFC was struggling means UFC salaries should stay stagnant forever?

Matt Hughes was one of Dana's buddies, and he got the buddy treatment. Not everyone is so lucky. I doubt Tito ever got a $1 million bonus after one of his fights.
I don't think Matt got the "buddy" treatment. Matt was one of the first stars in the UFC that brought fans, so he made money. He also happen to be a bad ass fighter. Simple Phone Post 3.0
7/19/13 11:08 AM
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OnlyTheStrongSurvive
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Fitch didn't really complain, he was just honest about his pay when he got cut for being "super expensive."

It's also not about how much money, it's what percentage of the UFC revenue are they getting. Phone Post
7/19/13 11:11 AM
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mongo54
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OnlyTheStrongSurvive -  Fitch didn't really complain, he was just honest about his pay when he got cut for being "super expensive."

It's also not about how much money, it's what percentage of the UFC revenue are they getting. Phone Post

Fitch failed to mention the sponsorship money he received as a result of the UFC brand ezposure.

7/19/13 11:11 AM
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OnlyTheStrongSurvive
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Whambo - So because he didn't make much when the UFC was struggling means UFC salaries should stay stagnant forever?

Matt Hughes was one of Dana's buddies, and he got the buddy treatment. Not everyone is so lucky. I doubt Tito ever got a $1 million bonus after one of his fights.
Tito was cashing huge checks while losing fight after fight after fight in the UFC. Phone Post
7/19/13 11:17 AM
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OnlyTheStrongSurvive
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mongo54 -
OnlyTheStrongSurvive -  Fitch didn't really complain, he was just honest about his pay when he got cut for being "super expensive."

It's also not about how much money, it's what percentage of the UFC revenue are they getting. Phone Post

Fitch failed to mention the sponsorship money he received as a result of the UFC brand ezposure.

That doesn't cost the UFC anything. And I highly doubt Fitch made a ton on sponsorships and his style has a lot to do with that.

Either way I don't really see how it's relevant, as all Fitch did was defend himself as being "super expensive" by bringing up how much he actually made vs what he believes the owners the UFC make. Phone Post
7/19/13 11:19 AM
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Dead President
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Zaph - "When I was a lad, I had to walk to school barefoot, uphill, and in three feet of snow." Phone Post
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7/19/13 11:21 AM
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Michael Chase
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GMan99 - I don't like or agree with this notion, "If people aren't buying a PPV or a ticket to the event because of you, then what are you worth?" but it is being cited frequently of late.

I think this kind of thinking is what has diminished my inclination to buy PPVs. It used to be that you had a balanced card where you were interested in buying the card as a whole. Now, they have become so main event driven, and the rest of the card frequently seems like filler.

I think that if someone is a good fighter, in an interesting matchup, they contribute to my overall desire to buy the card. If there is a good main event, but a lackluster rest of the card, then I am reluctant to buy because what if the main event is disappointing?
You may not like or agree with it, but it's the nature of things. Sports will always be business and a fighter will only ever be as good as the number of people who will pay to watch him fight.

If the UFC adopted an attitude of what many posters here think is "right", MMA as a whole would probably start dying off pretty quickly. Phone Post
7/19/13 11:24 AM
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ranier wolfcastle
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some guys spend too much of their checks on tattoos and dont have much left to support theirfamily

7/19/13 11:41 AM
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kungfugrip
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he has a point how far the sport has gone in 15-20 years. Athletes will always want more pay. I also agree that being exciting should help your pay. After all, this is a business

Note: Yes, I'd like to see fighters get paid more. But I too, would like to get paid more also
7/19/13 12:21 PM
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mongo54
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OnlyTheStrongSurvive - 
mongo54 -
OnlyTheStrongSurvive -  Fitch didn't really complain, he was just honest about his pay when he got cut for being "super expensive."

It's also not about how much money, it's what percentage of the UFC revenue are they getting. Phone Post

Fitch failed to mention the sponsorship money he received as a result of the UFC brand ezposure.

That doesn't cost the UFC anything. And I highly doubt Fitch made a ton on sponsorships and his style has a lot to do with that.

Either way I don't really see how it's relevant, as all Fitch did was defend himself as being "super expensive" by bringing up how much he actually made vs what he believes the owners the UFC make. Phone Post

Brand exposure is a direct result of the money spent by the UFC to market and promote.  Fighters get paid more by sponsors for a bigger viewer platform.

Fitch also threw out numbers that he believed the UFC made, but failed to account for their expenses, which must be massive.  As an example, they have storage rentals all over the world, it's cheaper to do that then ship an octagon to each show. 

7/19/13 12:25 PM
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JimmersonzGlove
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Fitch is a bad example to use. One of the reasons why UFC is king is because everyone agrees they have the best talent. Having legit top five guys on cards is important to maintain the impressison of this. So while Jon Fitch personally may not move the needle, having a guy on cards who was consensus top three in the world for years does matter. Phone Post
7/19/13 12:25 PM
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mrwhipple
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mongo54 - 
OnlyTheStrongSurvive - 
mongo54 -
OnlyTheStrongSurvive -  Fitch didn't really complain, he was just honest about his pay when he got cut for being "super expensive."

It's also not about how much money, it's what percentage of the UFC revenue are they getting. Phone Post

Fitch failed to mention the sponsorship money he received as a result of the UFC brand ezposure.

That doesn't cost the UFC anything. And I highly doubt Fitch made a ton on sponsorships and his style has a lot to do with that.

Either way I don't really see how it's relevant, as all Fitch did was defend himself as being "super expensive" by bringing up how much he actually made vs what he believes the owners the UFC make. Phone Post

Brand exposure is a direct result of the money spent by the UFC to market and promote.  Fighters get paid more by sponsors for a bigger viewer platform.

Fitch also threw out numbers that he believed the UFC made, but failed to account for their expenses, which must be massive.  As an example, they have storage rentals all over the world, it's cheaper to do that then ship an octagon to each show. 


Sure there expenses are huge, but as people have pointed out time and time again their EBITDA is huge as well. Unlike most fighters, they are not barely skimping by, they are making huge profits.
7/19/13 12:45 PM
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ufc98newb
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JimmersonzGlove -  Fitch is a bad example to use. One of the reasons why UFC is king is because everyone agrees they have the best talent. Having legit top five guys on cards is important to maintain the impressison of this. So while Jon Fitch personally may not move the needle, having a guy on cards who was consensus top three in the world for years does matter. Phone Post

+1. JG gets it. 

7/19/13 12:58 PM
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B_Goetz
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Oh, a Zuffa executive thinks fighters shouldn't complain about fighter pay? That's news-worthy.

"I'm not talking bad about him...but what good is he?" - Matt Hughes
7/19/13 1:11 PM
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joe_mama
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While Hughes is technically correct, he does miss one large point. That back then, most guys held days jobs in addition to fighting on the side. There really wasn't the 'professional athlete' aspect of it back then that there is now. With guys training full-time, camps and teammates et al that they have to now support.

I remember hearing an anecdote in fact that Matt Hughes worked on the farm still and as a roofer during his early tenure.
7/19/13 1:12 PM
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GMan99
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Michael Chase - 
GMan99 - I don't like or agree with this notion, "If people aren't buying a PPV or a ticket to the event because of you, then what are you worth?" but it is being cited frequently of late.

I think this kind of thinking is what has diminished my inclination to buy PPVs. It used to be that you had a balanced card where you were interested in buying the card as a whole. Now, they have become so main event driven, and the rest of the card frequently seems like filler.

I think that if someone is a good fighter, in an interesting matchup, they contribute to my overall desire to buy the card. If there is a good main event, but a lackluster rest of the card, then I am reluctant to buy because what if the main event is disappointing?
You may not like or agree with it, but it's the nature of things. Sports will always be business and a fighter will only ever be as good as the number of people who will pay to watch him fight.

If the UFC adopted an attitude of what many posters here think is "right", MMA as a whole would probably start dying off pretty quickly. Phone Post

My point is that I think that it is inaccurate to think that everyone buys a card because of one or a couple guys. I base this on my experience that I have chosen not to buy any more thin cards regardless of who is in the main event.
7/19/13 1:19 PM
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NomoRomophobia
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Ip Man 81 -
Zaph - "When I was a lad, I had to walk to school barefoot, uphill, and in three feet of snow." Phone Post
Uphill both ways Phone Post 3.0
Luxury! Phone Post 3.0
7/19/13 1:22 PM
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Wriggling Grunion
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A millionaire doesn't understand why some people aren't satisfied with $10,000/$10,000, what a surprise. Hughes' family had enough wealth that he didn't even depend upon his fight pay in order to survive.
7/19/13 1:26 PM
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4de1
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It's frustrating to hear someone like Hughes talk about merit-based pay.

I hope he can talk about what made him the best possible candidate to become UFC Vice President of Athletic Development and Government Relations.


I'm sure its 100% based on his qualifications for this position. It's all about merit.
7/19/13 1:31 PM
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JerodR
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They may be fighters but the reality is that they are in the business of sales. Fighters are their own brand and if someone is not putting out the money to pay for that brand then they are not going to make the big money... It is what it is. How do people think the UFC and other organizations pay for these fighters? Hopes and dreams? It takes revenue. Revenue generated by people wanting to see the fighters fight. If you ever go into sales for a major company you don't think that just because you are employed there, you automatically make big money. You have to do well and earn it...no different.

If you want to make solid money then you need to be a great fighter, it as simple as that. The UFC is not welfare, and nobody is entitled to anything. They have to earn it.

You want to get paid, then be one of the best or take a page from Joe Louzon's book and put on exciting fights.

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