Also in Paul’s message to White was a plea to book Jon Jones versus Francis Ngannou for the UFC heavyweight title. “Pay them their fair share,” wrote Paul. “$10m purse for each guy, plus PPV.”
After Paul’s critique of White and UFC pay structures, Jones—no stranger to dissent when it comes to what ZUFFA pays its athletes—posted a curious tweet.
“Jake Paul congratulations on your victory, that knockout over Ben was absolutely beautiful,” wrote Jones. “If you’re seriously making over 5 million for a fight already, that’s wild. I’m so happy for you. Wishing you all the best on your combat sports journey.”
Jon Jones congratulated Jake Paul on his Knock Out victory over Ben Askren pic.twitter.com/lp9ZuEeK07— Search Fight lounge on YouTube (@fightlounge_) April 26, 2021
Jones would of course delete the tweet moments later.
Jones, Ngannou and White have all locked horns for the best part of a year now regarding the value of seeing Bones vs. The Predator inside the UFC cage. Last summer, before Ngannou won the heavyweight title with a win over Stipe Miocic, the Cameroonian had been suggested as a potential first fight for Jones in the heavyweight division.
However, both Ngannou and Jones made it clear they would not be fighting each other for the kind of money they made in their previous fights. For such a big match-up, they expected a big payday. The UFC disagreed.
This conversation was reignited after Ngannou’s capture of the title. With the belt now on the line, both men agreed that their efforts should be rewarded with some of the bigger purses in UFC history. White would claim that Jones wanted $30 million for the fight, which Jones denied.
Whatever the figures were, it seems as though the UFC has moved on from wanting to put one of the most intriguing fights possible and is instead preparing to make Derrick Lewis vs. Francis Ngannou with a likely six-figure purse being offered to both men.