Jessica Rose-Clark had a big win this past weekend, stopping Sarah Alpar by TKO as part of the UFC Vegas 11 card. With lots of huge performances on the card though, the bantamweight was passed over for a performance of the night bonus.
Shortly after the announcement of the fight night bonuses, Clark revealed that she badly needed that extra $50,000.
“A bonus would have been nice Uncle Dana,” Clark wrote. “I’ll do better next time.”
The screenshot showed that she had just $17.70 left in her bank account as of the morning of the fight.
Clark is currently 3-2 in the UFC, and got her first win since badly injuring her foot and undergoing surgery.
It would be easy to brush off one case like this as an anomaly, but UFC fighters working multiple jobs and coming into bouts pretty much broke isn’t really a rare thing. Just a week prior, Kevin Croom balanced a construction job along with his fighting career and revealed that he had just $64 in his bank account coming into his UFC fight.
On Wednesday I had $64 in my bank account, and was trying to figure out how to make it $65......helluva weekend!!!— Kevin Croom (@kevincroom_ufc) September 13, 2020
“Unfortunately, I’m pretty used to that,” Croom told MMA Fighting. “I woke up on Wednesday and thought I would have to build a fence on Saturday and Sunday so I could get a full week of training in. It turns out that I didn’t have to.”
Croom was a bit more fortunate than Clark, as he was one of the four people given a Performance of the Night bonus after his 31-second submission win. He was of course happy to get an additional $50,000 outside of his normal contract, and Dana White highlighted the “big rewards” his fighter got.
So fucking badass!— danawhite (@danawhite) September 14, 2020
Those who take big risks, get BIG REWARDS https://t.co/KWQ1i0cEIn
While White boasted about their limited event bonus helping out one athlete, there’s just far too many cases of talented (and even top ranked) UFC fighters begging and relying on the off chance they’ll get awarded extra cash from a win.
A typical UFC contract on its own have been far too low as it is, and losses would generally mean fighters take home half of that total. It’s been documented that the promotion has been aiming for a 17% revenue share for years, and recently, they’ve been filling up their roster with even cheaper DWCS signees that are paid below the typical minimum UFC deal.
White has been bragging about their growth and how successful the UFC has been during this pandemic. He has also made numerous comparisons to other sports as well, but they certainly don’t pay like those major sports organizations. Making it into the premier organization supposedly means you’re among the very best professional athletes in the sport, but perhaps the UFC should start paying them accordingly.