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Cole Smith on first UFC paycheck: ‘This sport sucks’

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Cole Smith won his UFC debut, but doesn’t seem happy about his starting salary and fighter pay in general.

MMA: UFC Fight Night-Ottawa-Gagnon vs Smith Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

After three years traveling the globe and fighting professionally, Cole Smith got his first UFC shot this past weekend. On the first bout of UFC Ottawa, he defeated an experienced UFC vet in Mitch Gagnon by unanimous decision to remain undefeated and improve his record to 6-0.

While he was successful on his UFC debut, Smith didn’t seem too pleased about his first paycheck and the state of fighter salaries in the sport in general.

“This sport sucks, man,” Smith said shortly after his win. “Cutting weight, doing a bunch of shit I don’t want to do, so I want to get paid accordingly. It’s one thing you’re fighting for peanuts your whole life. I’ve mooched rides, I’ve mooched food, my brothers have to give me clothes. It’s about time. I want to be paid.

“It’s bullshit that someone in the NBA who doesn’t even touch the court is getting 600 grand, while I’m out here fighting my ass off, and I’m getting 10.”

Smith did clarify his statements immediately after, stating that he’s “happy to be here” and really appreciative of the opportunity.

“I just mean it’s a really really tough sport. That’s all I’m saying,” he said. “My first experience here has been absolutely amazing. They’ve treated me great.”