Fighter pay is just one of those topics in MMA. Almost inevitably, talk of the business side of the sport leads back to the problems that many fighters have making enough money to keep fighting. Obviously, with her UFC career running full swing and a few film roles already under her belt, Ronda's not exactly hurting. But, that doesn't mean she doesn't have some thoughts on how much money fighters are making. When asked about the current UFC lawsuit and how it reflected back on the issue of fighter pay, Rousey targeted the UFC ring girls for a point of comparison (transcript via MMAFighting):
"I think that they should get paid more than the ring girls," Rousey said Wednesday at a media day to promote UFC 184 at Glendale Fighting Club. "And I don't know if the ring girls get paid too much or the fighters don't get paid enough. But yeah. There's definitely a lot more in what the fighters do than what they do. So, I think that's one thing that's unfair. But, you know, I've always been well taken care of. I'm always extremely happy with how I've been treated."
"I always think it's been extremely fair, given what... But, I have a comparison with how I was treated as an Olympian to how I'm treated as a UFC fighter and I always feel like I'm just so lucky to work with a company that I feel like actually cares," said Rousey, who won the bronze medal in judo at 2008 games. "There's times where they give me more than they're contractually obligated to or more than I even expect. That's why I always trust them so much. Even if they didn't ever give me anything extra, I would still be happy, because you know what I made an as Olympian? Nothing. It cost me money."
Arianny: Ronda's not a good role model for women
UFC Octagon girl Arianny Celeste has some sharp words for women's Bantamweight champ Ronda Rousey.
Of course, this isn't the first time that Ronda has used the UFC's ring girls as a target. In a Sherdog interview back in 2012, Rousey took a shot at the card carrying profession, saying that "There's a reason why the ring girls aren't asked to star in movies, and it's because they're pretty but talentless." And she and Arianny Celeste had a somewhat notable back and forth in early 2014. So, whether it's about fighter pay or not, I think it's safe to say that Rousey doesn't have much love for the Octagon girls.
To that point, Arianny has responded to Ronda's interview via Twitter:
@GBTRU pretty positive we don't get paid more than fighters. I work my ass off outside of Ufc not sure if anyone notices. TALK Is CHEAP.— Arianny Celeste (@AriannyCeleste) February 19, 2015
Some rumors have the average UFC ring girl salary at around $20,000 a year (which might put them in line with NFL mascots). If that's the case, Arianny may have a point.