Earlier this year, reports surfaced that a fighter’s union had officially been formed. With current and former fighters such as UFC legend Randy Couture, UFC women’s bantamweight Leslie Smith, and MMA veteran Cung Le jumping on-board to name just a few of the fighters.
Earlier this week however, top ranked UFC welterweight & lightweight, Donald ‘Cowboy’ Cerrone weighed-in on the formation of a fighter’s union during a media luncheon, in which he stated:
“I’ll gladly put my head on the chopping block and say I’ll be the front face of this mother f*cker. I’ve paid my way, man. I’ve earned the right to sit here and speak. I think there’s a lot of people that are scared and not willing to step up and do it. It’s gonna take a couple of us and it needs to be done.”
“I’ll be the guy,” Cerrone said. “I’m not scared. All I’m saying is we need a fighters union 1,000, million percent, especially with the new owners coming in and I think now is the time.”
“We have no direction,” Cerrone said. “We have no one to stand up for the fighters’ rights. If something bad were to happen, no one backs him and it’s just him alone and everything gets washed out. We need people to stand up and fight for it.”
Ahead of UFC 205, where Cerrone was slated to fight Kelvin Gastelum prior to Gastelum being unable to make weight for the event, UFC President Dana White spoke about a fighter’s union during an appearance on Sirius XM, saying:
“Good luck to ya. The fighting business is so different – this is an individual sport, this isn’t a team sport. It’s completely different. Let me tell you what. These fighters have managers for one fight and they fire them and then they’re on to the next guy. It’s a lot of crazy stuff that goes on in this business.
“But at the end of the day do I care about a union? I’ve got to negotiate with somebody. A union wouldn’t be my problem, the union would be the fighters’ problem.”
“Unions don’t necessarily make things better, you know what I mean? Careful what you wish for… I couldn’t care either way. I could care less. It doesn’t matter to me.”
Only time will tell if a fighter’s union will ever become a staple of the MMA world.