Jared Cannoner He scored a big win last Saturday night when he was defeated Kelvin Gastelum By deciding in the main event UFC Vegas 34 but then all anyone could talk about was meet him after the fight.
Just moments after claiming the win, the 37-year-old middleweight contender admitted that he was “broken” and that he needed to fight again sooner rather than later.
Thanks to the injuries he sustained inside the octagon, Kanonaire has only been able to fight twice in the past two years and this has put a financial strain on him and his family, especially after he left his previous full-time job working for the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).
Monday during the appearance of the day MMA watchCannonier clarified his comments while also revealing how much his salary disappeared before it actually reached his bank account.
“It’s not horrible, it’s just a natural occurrence if you will,” Cannonier said of his financial situation. “Of course after the injury, I don’t get out of control or anything like that, and a lot of people don’t understand that when we have these fights we owe people money after these fights. After that win, 60 percent of my money is already gone. Between the gym, Between administration, between taxes, on top of that I have bills, credit cards, I have children, I have a house in Alaska, I have a house here, I have car payments. This money goes. Money doesn’t last forever.
“Now fighting is our only income. I don’t have sponsors or anything like that. Fighting is my only focus. I’m not here to do commercials or anything like that. Nobody’s asking me to be in the next Marvel movie. Not being able to fight.” For the past 10 months it’s been a strain on our pockets. So I’m happy to be back there. I’m glad I got two checks as well as the main event bonus. I’m glad I didn’t get hurt so I could do it again.”
Based on the UFC rankings, Cannonier is currently the 3rd middleweight in the promotion but doesn’t feel he is being compensated for the position he has earned in the division.
While most major sports leagues such as the NFL or the NBA have negotiated collective bargaining agreements with players’ associations that guarantee athletes a certain percentage of revenue earned – typically around 50 percent – the UFC does not have such an agreement.
Based on information revealed through an ongoing class-action lawsuit against the UFC by a group of ex-fighters, the promotion has typically paid 20 percent of revenue or less to athletes over the years. Unlike other leagues, the UFC also does not have a “minimum” contract that is called in as it guarantees athletes a certain salary like the NHL where players earn at least $750,000 annually for the 2021-2022 season.
“I’m not here to say the UFC isn’t paying me,” Cannonier said. “Because I get paid well from the UFC. It’s just that money doesn’t last forever. I’m not here out of control, I’m not bragging or anything like that. I’m not stupid, I don’t spend my money on stupid things but it’s just life on what I think… I would like to get my salary.
“I’m an elite level athlete. I would like to be paid like an elite level athlete. Like the players in the NFL and the NBA and the players play baseball and soccer and do all those things. They get sponsors but they don’t need sponsors. All they need is verification through the organization It’s what we need here in the UFC. It’s what we all like.”
While Canonnier was receiving his last salary from a fight against Robert Whitaker In October 2020 until he returned to the cage last Saturday night, he believes the fighters should have much more financial security.
Both of his recent layoffs have been due to injuries sustained in UFC fights, and while promoting the surgeries required to repair the damage done, Cannonier still has to support his family in the meantime so he can compete again.
According to Kanoner, he hasn’t been able to make a lot of savings lately, which obviously affects him in the long run because he can’t fight forever.
“I should have six numbers in my account that I don’t even want to touch,” Cannonier said. “I don’t have to worry about ‘If I get hurt and I can’t fight anymore, what the hell am I going to do?'” Unfortunately, this is a situation where there are a lot of fighters – and myself.
“My wife gets ready to get up and go to work, which goes against the structure we have as a family. She has a lot here at home, she looks after the house, she takes care of the kids, she makes sure everything is where it should be so I can go and do my things, and no You don’t have to worry about everything else going on.”
With his wife training for a new job, Kanonair admits he was forced to change his training schedule to prepare for fights. This was the same obstacle he faced while working a full-time job previously before he was eventually left to focus solely on his UFC career.
To be clear, Kannoner says he doesn’t want to fight anywhere else because he loves to compete in the UFC but adds that “bigger fights should definitely mean bigger salaries” and that’s not something he’s really experienced yet.
“I’m not complaining. It’s the UFC pay structure, we’re signing our contracts,” Kanoner explained. “But yeah, I want a bigger check. I don’t want to be like those guys we see in the NFL, I’m not one of those guys who comes out stunting people and threading and showing off like that. There are bigger and better things I can do with my money.
“I’ve never been happier. This is the best job I’ve ever had. I think the UFC takes good care of our athletes. They make sure we have everything we need, especially during fight week. It’s the number one MMA organization in the world. I’m a part of history in This connection. I am grateful and fortunate to be a part of this organization. Yes, I want more money. I would like one fight to be able to keep me for at least two years, not one year. Then based on that, we build that.”
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