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BKFC’s Chad Mendes reveals he still has three fights on his UFC contract

Chad Mendes isn’t ruling out a return to MMA, for the right price.

Chad Mendes when he fought Alexander Volkanovski at UFC 232.
Chad Mendes when he fought Alexander Volkanovski at UFC 232.
Photo by Christian Petersen/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

Chad Mendes is scheduled to make his bare knuckle fighting debut tonight at BKFC Knucklemania 2. At that event, which goes down at the Hard Rock Casino in Hollywood, Fl, Mendes meets Joshuah Alvarez for a five-round contest (two minute rounds).

Mendes, a multiple time title challenger in the UFC, recently revealed that his pay at Knucklemania would be more than Francis Ngannou’s reported purse for his title defence at UFC 270 ($600,000).

Even more recently Mendes revealed more details about his contractual status with BKFC, notably that he is competing without gloves with the full endorsement of the UFC. Mendes told MMA Junkie that he is still under contract with the UFC, meaning they have full veto power over Mendes’ BKFC adventure.

However, it seems ZUFFA are fully content to allow Mendes—who last fought in the Octagon in 2018—to explore a different sport.

“(The UFC) were actually really cool about letting me come here and making money for my family,” he said. “They could have said no, so the fact that they did say yes, that’s good on them. Thank you.”

Mendes also revealed that the door back to the UFC isn’t totally closed to him.

“I still have three fights on my UFC contract, and what that pay is right now, not a chance. It’s just not worth it for me. If I ended up talking and we could renegotiate, possibly. But it would have to be really good money.”

If Mendes has been following the Ngannou-UFC situation closely, he would know that re-upping a contract with the UFC can be much easier said than done. The UFC’s undisputed heavyweight champion has been at odds with the UFC for a while now; not just regarding his overall pay, but also the restrictive nature of his contract.

Ngannou has been very public about his longing to switch between MMA and boxing and take a fight with boxing’s current heavyweight king Tyson Fury.

Mendes’ UFC-endorsed code-switch came after ‘Money’ made 14 appearances in the Octagon. He debuted for the organization after ZUFFA’s WEC purchase in 2010.

In 2012 he unsuccessfully challenged Jose Aldo for the UFC featherweight title. After that loss Mendes won five straight to earn a second shot at Aldo.

That rematch, at UFC 179 in 2014, ended in a unanimous decision loss, but was also named Fight of the Year.

After his second loss to Aldo, Mendes went 2-3 over the remainder of his UFC career, taking losses to former and future champions Conor McGregor, Frankie Edgar and Alexander Volkanovski.