UFC lightweight standout, Paul Felder is having some issues getting his full corner staff to Brazil for his upcoming bout with Francisco Trinaldo. The "Irish Dragon" has started a GoFundMe campaign (H/T Champions.co) to help cover the cost of getting the extra bodies to Brasilia for the September 24 Fight Night card.
Typically, the UFC covers the expenses for just one cornerman, a longtime point of concern among fighters and fans. A couple years back, retired UFC middleweight, Nate Quarry told Bloody Elbow just how tight a ship the UFC runs.
"Like when cornering a fighter. If you corner somebody at the Palms, the fighter gets to use the gym for free, but the cornermen have to pay to use the gym. I'm in there helping my fighter cut weight, but I have to pay a fee to use the gym. I mean really? Is that money going to make or break the UFC or the Palms? They couldn't just say, ‘Hey, we've got sixteen fighters coming in for this event, they each get three extra passes to use the gym for the week?' Is that such a big deal to the UFC? It is for the guys making $8,000 to show.
You get one flight for the fighter, and one flight for a corner man. How often do you see just one corner man? It's at least two, generally three or four. That means this fighter is now paying out of pocket to bring his doctor out to help him rehydrate, his kickboxing coach and his jiu-jitsu coach. Then you have the 20% of the purse that goes back to the gym itself."
Felder posted a video for the campaign, where he makes his plea for help (H/T Sherdog for the transcript).
"The UFC can only cover so many flights. I've got a few other cornermen I've got to bring with me. They're important to our victory. So if you guys want to help me get this win, we're asking that you donate whatever you can — just a little bit. It's just to get my coaches over there. Not for personal gain. It's for flights to get guys to Brazil so we can get this ‘W' and come back home to the United States victorious."