Report: Morale is Suffering at UFC HQ, Atmosphere Compared to “A Morgue”

October 18, 2016 8:31 am by Tom Taylor
UFC President Dana White

Earlier this year, the UFC was sold for a whopping $4 billion – quite a jump from the $2 million Lorenzo and Frank Fertitta purchased it for back in the year 2000.

With this groundbreaking sale, which saw the company’s reigns handed to talent agency WME-IMG, the UFC seemed poised to reach new and exciting heights. Yet while the UFC has experienced some interesting changes under this new ownership, things have not been looking especially good for the company over the last few months.

Most notably, fighters have been revolting left, right and center.

MMA legend Georges St-Pierre recently announced that he’d terminated his contract with the UFC. Interim featherweight champ Jose Aldo is also keen on ripping up his UFC agreement. Undefeated lightweight contender Khabib Nurmagomedov has said he’ll attempt to leave the UFC if he’s not given the next shot at the lightweight title. Top female bantamweight Julianna Peña is also considering a departure from the UFC. Japanese featherweight veteran Tatsuya Kawajiri has asked out his contract with the organization. Streaking lightweight Al Iaquinta abandoned his UFC career for one in real estate. Ranked welterweight Lorenz Larkin has opted to test free agency rather than resign with the UFC. Former middleweight champions Luke Rockhold and Chris Weidman have both recently butted heads with the UFC over their contracts.

The list goes on and on, and seems to be growing by the day. Fighters, it seems, are not happy with the way the UFC is currently operating.

According to the ever-reliable Ariel Helwani, morale is not much better among the UFC’s non-combatant employees. On Tuesday morning, the highly regarded reporter took to Twitter with reports of massive layoffs at the UFC’s Asian offices, and plummeting morale at the organization’s Vegas headquarters.

Needless to say, the UFC’s groundbreaking sale is resulting in some pretty major shifts– and not all of them seem to be benefiting UFC’s fighters and employees. Of course, given that WME-IMG has their own team, layoffs and changes are not exactly surprising.

What do you you think of the way the UFC’s new owners are managing the company? Sound off, PENN Nation!


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