K-1 and DREAM promoter Fighting Entertainment Group are starting to fall apart at the seams, and Gary Goodridge
is the latest in a long line of fighters to come forward and confirm that.Bibiano Fernandes
, Andy Souwer
, Ronaldo "Jacare" Souza
and others on and off the record have stated over the past twelve months that they have not been paid in a timely fashion for fights under the FEG banner and although Goodridge first made his situation known
back in August , he claims
that he has still not received his compensation.
"It's been almost a year since I fought Mousasi at FEG's NYE show in Japan. I want my money. I stayed quiet because I thought they were going to pay me but I still haven't seen a penny. I have bills I have to pay. I worked for the Japanese people for over a decade, and I never thought they would treat me like this."
Goodridge faced former Strikeforce light heavyweight champion and current DREAM light heavyweight champion Gegard Mousasi at FEG's Dynamite!! event on December 31st, 2009 where came in on short notice and was stopped in just over one and a half minutes by the Dutch-Armenian fighter.
"I always fought whoever they asked me to, whenever they asked me to. I was in rough shape before I took the fight against Mousasi but they needed a fighter with only a week to go before the show so I stepped up for the fans. Now they won't answer my calls and nobody will talk to me. I have had my lawyer and my manager call them but they have not been able to get an answer."
Goodridge, the 2005 Hawaiian K-1 World GP champion, has not won a kickboxing bout since 2006 and has not won a MMA bout since 2008. His most recent fight
, a second round TKO loss to Catalin Morosanu, was an unfortunately clear indicator that he should have hung up the gloves some time ago but Goodridge's comments lead one to believe that he is not able to for financial reasons.
"They have always been great to me but I really need this money in these hard times. I hope they will stop screwing me."
A source close to Goodridge told MMAFighting.com that, "Gary did the deal on a handshake," and Goodridge himself stated that the fighter's manager was not involved in setting up the fight and so it could complicate matters if he decides to take FEG to court.
FEG USA's Mike Kogan commented, "I feel terrible, I am gonna get some answers when I go to Japan. I have no idea what is going on, a year is a long time."
Kogan will be in Japan to commentate the K-1 World Grand Prix Finals on December 11th.
The unfortunate reality of the situation is that Goodridge's problem with FEG is far from unique and sources indicate that some Japanese fighters are far worse off than their foreign counterparts. DREAM featherweight champion Bibiano Fernandes has confirmed that he was eventually paid for his March bout with Joachim Hansen and has agreed to defend his belt this New Year's Eve.
FEG have stated that they will continue booking fights for Dynamite!! after the Dec. 11 K-1 World GP Finals, and although the promotion has stated that the reason is to simply focus on the task at hand, it is clear that FEG desperately need the final K-1 event of the year to be highly profitable.