Highly regarded as one of the world’s absolute best Muay Thai fighters, Buakaw Por. Pramuk, recently disappeared on the eve of a scheduled fighting appearance and for more than a week made headlines as a missing person.
He then surfaced in a television interview with Thai media explaining his mistreatment, poor management and fraudulent dealings in his career.
For those who have not heard of Buakaw, he is a K-1 MAX legend. He is the former Omnoi Stadium champion and a two time, 2004, 2006 K-1 World MAX champion. Yet he only collects $200.00 per fight.
In a climate where many speak out against the compensation of MMA fighters and pressure the UFC to compensate their talent more, this story is presented as a contrast in combat sports that proves MMA guys don’t have it so bad after all.
Here is the report from fightsportasia.com:
The K-1 MAX legend and Lumpinee International Fighter of the Year speaks out in this shock interview, in which he candidly reveals that he wanted to retire in 2009, but Por.Pramuk would not allow him to. He also mentions wanting to go out and enjoy himself more, and that he has had many problems within the gym regarding training and other issues, but that the gym “make problems for him”, and strong arm him into training more and backing down regardless of the issue at hand.
It was insinuated throughout the interview that Buakaw had been threatened. At the very least, that he has been forced into acquiescence by Por.Pramuk for years upon years, the gym in which he lives in a room with three other men.
Any questions asked about money, it should be noted that Buakaw quietly avoided answering, instead telling us that he’s suffered recurring injuries. It has long been known that Por.Pramuk have taken the lions share of all Buakaw’s fight purses; the strongest rumour being that when he won 1 million yen (about US $12,000) for the K-1 World MAX, that he only received 20,000 (about US $200) of it and that the rest went directly to Por.Pramuk who ‘bought four houses’, among other subsequent expenditures.
It should be noted that while Buakaw avoids responding to questions about money, he has never denied that his gym take the lions share of his earnings.
You can check out his video interview where he comes clean on all the wrongdoings on page 2.