Gerald Harris was one of the middleweight prospects to watch in the UFC a few short years ago. In his four fight tenure with the organization, he logged three wins, with two of them garnering the nod for knockout of the night bonuses. Unfortunately, after one loss to Maiquel Falcao, he was unceremoniously cut from the comfort of Zuffa's embrace. Getting your walking papers from any job is a tough pill to swallow, but this one was especially surprising, since there was only the one hiccup in his UFC record. Since then, he has since had five fights with outside organizations, a successful debut at welterweight, and is on a four fight win streak.
Things are looking up for Harris, and he plans to continue making some noise with Ray Sefo's new promotion, World Series Of Fighting. For many fighters that get a pink slip, the goal is to go out, get some wins and wait for the call to be welcomed back to the UFC. The same doesn't hold true for Gerald. In his eyes, the name of the game is not necessarily getting back on the largest stage in the world, it's about making as much money as possible before he hangs up the gloves.
I'll be 33 in a month, and my goal is to make as much money as possible, to get as many wins as possible, until my body slows down. World Series Of Fighting pays great. It's a new opportunity. I don't know where it's going to go, but I would love to stay there and make some good money, be on NBC Sports, and maybe become a champion with them. I'd like to do as much as I can with them.
I have a comedy career that I'm trying to focus on, so I use my fight money to help that along. You can't fight forever. You can see all these NFL and NBA players going broke, making bad investments. I want to make good investments with the money I make. I'm preparing for my future after fighting, so I'm gonna go wherever I can get paid. I fight, I have comedy shows, and I run a gym, so I've got three jobs, three sources of income.
Several fighters have come forward, voicing their financial woes, but Gerald believes it's because of poor spending choices more than small paychecks.
These guys spend their money the wrong way. When I was teaching, I was making $350 a week, and I made a living off of it. Your lifestyle makes the difference. If you want to live a $10k a month lifestyle, you're gonna have to be fighting every two months on big shows. That's your fault. I think any of these guys being broke, it's their fault. I have no sympathy for them. I've been there before, and it was my fault, spending the money like crazy, giving it away, letting people borrow it. You can live off two fights a year. You just have to be smart and spend your money right.
Gerald will be facing another UFC veteran, Josh Burkman, on November 3 on the inaugural World Series Of Fighting card in Las Vegas. You can check it out on NBC Sports (formerly Versus).
You can follow Gerald via his Twitter account, @GHurricane