Israel Adesanya compares fighters to strippers due to their pay: “We need to get paid like it’s a f*****g big deal”

Israel Adesanya, UFC 236, Yoel Romero

Israel Adesanya thinks fighters need to be paid more money.

Adesanya has been vocal in the past about fighter pay, especially with Francis Ngannou going through his contract dispute. Although ‘Stylebender’ signed a lucrative deal prior to his last fight, he says fighters are still paid like strippers and should instead be paid more like NFL and NBA players.

“It takes time,” Adesanya said at UFC 276 media day. “You have to look at it this way, fighters are like strippers, we are independent contractors so everyone is out for themselves but there comes a point where we need to come together as fighters in the UFC and make an agreement like, what can we do to help the baseline for the younger guys or the guys who just got into the UFC? Honestly, this is a prestigious position to be a UFC fighter. I don’t live in America if it’s the same with the NBA and the NFL but the draft is a big deal right? I feel like that’s how the UFC is. You make it to the UFC, it’s a f*****g big deal, so we need to get paid like it’s a f*****g big deal.

Israel Adesanya
Image Credit: UFC

“I’m getting paid, a few of us are getting paid but I’m talking about the guys who just get into the UFC. Paddy just got his contract boosted up but he’s a superstar in his own right, he made his way,” Adesanya continued. “And, also these guys you can’t just expect to get paid and not do anything. You need to show off. I don’t mean show off as in what you guys think show off is, I mean show off who you are, set yourself apart from the rest. That is how you make the mpnye. It takes time, Rome wasn’t built in a day so we are still working.”

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Whether or not Israel Adesanya’s comments will change anything is unlikely. And, as he mentions, most fighters are only looking out for themselves which has been a key reason why there is no union like in other pro sports for the athletes.

What do you make of Israel Adesanya’s comments?

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