Once the Ultimate Fighting Championship announced their partnership with Reebok, fans and fighters alike were apprehensive to celebrate the deal. When the final details about the payouts were released, some fighters claimed to like the amounts but several fighters spoke out against it claiming they would be losing several thousand dollars in sponsorship money.
Some fighters have since backtracked, but UFC’s Ryan Jimmo wants the company to make sure they know how he feels on the matter.
One thing with the UFC, this is almost like an abusive relationship,” Jimmo told Bloody Elbow. Jimmo went on to compare the relationship fighters have with the UFC to an abusive relationship between two people. A woman would first show a bruise, then ultimately a broken nose and she would lie about how she got it.
“The broken nose is the Reebok deal coming out. Everyone went ‘oh my god, this is a horribly abusive relationship between the fighters and the UFC.’ And all the little things people heard about fighters complaining about before, about pay, or a bout agreement, or fighters angry about this or that, it became obvious that those were symptoms of an abusive relationship the whole time.”
When asked what he liked least about the deal, Jimmo stated, “One is we never got asked about it. We don’t have group bargaining available to us like other sports do. In other sports a higher percentage of their revenue goes into the athletes pockets. In the NHL, MLB, the NFL, 45 to 55 percent of their revenue goes to the athletes. In the UFC it’s like 10%.”
While most fighters want to keep silent so they can remain with the UFC with no love lost between them, Jimmo is looking to have his voice heard. Do you agree with him? Share your thoughts in the comment section below!
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