Just under a month ago, Henry Cejudo retired from fighting, citing money disputes. Last week, Jon Jones ceded his UFC light heavyweight belt, citing money disputes. The latest fighter to become embroiled in this is Jorge Masvidal, who has taken to Twitter to voice his frustrations.
After talks about Masvidal fighting welterweight champion Kamaru Usman broke down, there was uncertainty as to who Masvidal would fight next, with there being murmurs of him wanting a rematch with Nate Diaz. Masvidal posted, “Why make me fight for half of what I made on my last fight cause the other dude can’t draw,” perhaps revealing the root of the dispute in the Masvidal vs. Usman negotiations.
Masvidal’s last fight, of course, was against the aforementioned Diaz at UFC 244 for the newly minted “BMF” belt, which Masvidal won via doctor stoppage TKO after the third round. UFC 244 was a very lucrative PPV event; however, Masvidal was certainly the B-side, with Diaz’s name probably driving the lion’s share of buys.
In any case, Masvidal is looking to maximize his earnings now that he is at the peak of his popularity, and his camp has thus taken a more aggressive stance in negotiations. Earlier today, Masvidal even suggested that the UFC cut him, posting “If I’m not worth it let me go.”
UFC president Dana White responded in a news conference, saying “I think everybody wants more money,” but that “Anybody that doesn’t want to fight doesn’t have to fight, including Masvidal…” He later added: “These guys are independent contractors,” a statement which many find to be a contentious one, as UFC fighters are not allowed to fight for any other organization while under contract.
Masvidal even alluded to this, writing “I’m not an independent contractor if I can’t go anywhere else to make a living.”
Masvidal also raised the idea of revenue sharing for fighters, something which is practiced in the major American sporting leagues.
Jorge Masvidal and Jon Jones joining forces to become union agitators is the face turn we never thought we would see this summer, but here we are.