Thanks to the yeoman's work of MMA Mania's Brian Hemminger we have an excellent accord of some inflammatory statements made by former UFC fighters Jon Fitch and Jacob Volkmann. The pair were participating in a special media conference call today promoting next week's World Series of Fighting 3: Fitch vs. Burkman event. See below for a sampling from today's action.
Jon Fitch: I'm feeling very good. I'm rejuvenated. I feel like the weight of the world has been lifted off my shoulders headed into this fight. I have the feeling to speak freely and I'm looking forward to holding that belt.
From very early on I was fighting for my job every single fight. They made it clear to me that they didn't' like me or want me around. It's awesome to have people working with me instead of against me.
Ray's awesome. I got to speak with him when we were first hashing out the contract. Just hearing his input and mindset, it's great to see someone with high level fight experience as a promoter. A lot of promoters lose touch because they've never been kicked or kneed in the face before and you lose perspective.
There's just other times throughout my career with contract negotiations and after agreeing to terms of the contract. "If you lose we'll cut you and sign you back for half as much." Things under their breath around me, behind my back to the media. Without coming to my face and talking to me.
I'm proud of my history and proud of what I've done and even more proud to have the success I did in a hostile work environment. I feel like I have double the wins because of the circumstances I fought against.
It'll be helpful to fight for once without fear of losing my job.
I wouldn't go after the pay but I would go after things right away like giving fighters a voice. We don't get a say in regards to TRT use, marijuana use. The fighters aren't represented. Job security would be a good idea also. Support from other unions would be important too. If you had the people on board, you'd have more power. If you had good management, UFC was not your friend. If your management was doing a good job, they weren't in your corner.
Jacob Volkman: I would change the contract so it's not a four fight where you can be cut. I would change the minimum pay to 15,000 per fight and two years minimum. They're buying out Strikeforce and all the competitors and it would help people to survive if UFC was focused on paying their fighters more. I don't like when UFC says they treat fighters so well and the majority of them are just hanging on between next fight.
I'm a happy guy now. I've always been a happy guy. Even if my friends and family don't agree with me.
I'm changing my nickname to Dr. Feelgood.
Some other take aways from Ray Sefo on the call:
- WSOF 4 is slated for Aug. 10 at Citizens Bank Arena in Ontario, California.
- Tyrone Spong will fight at WSOF 4
- WSOF 5 is set for Sept. 14 in Atlantic City, New Jersey, possibly at Revel Atlantic City.
- Rolles Gracie could be back in action in September, possibly for WSOF 5
- Tyson Griffin will be fighting in August.
- Nick Newell will be fighting in one of the next two cards, either August or September.