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Morning Report: Jose Aldo says UFC athletes deserve a bigger 'part of these millions'

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Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

With the spotlight of his upcoming title fight with Chad Mendes at UFC 179, UFC featherweight champion Jose Aldo again brings up the issue of fighter pay.

Aldo said he felt 'devalued' by the UFC earlier this year and is again asking why the athletes aren't taking home a bigger slice of the $1.65 billion pie.

"I ask for financial valorization not only for me, some other fighters should have too," Aldo told Combate (via Bloody Elbow). "We give a lot for the company. I've seen this happening in the past, athletes were highly valued, and the company was not that big. Today, the company is very large and athletes devalued."

Aldo points to the recent strife between UFC president Dana White and the freshly retired Wanderlei Silva, who recently chided the organization over its treatment of prospects.

"If you're fighting well, you are valued by the company, but you are fired if you lose three straight fights," said Aldo. "It's hard to talk about numbers. You can watch Wanderlei Silva and Dana White discussing numbers. I'm employed by them, I can see their side. But we'll always seek for valorization."

Without naming names, Aldo has alluded to his frustration of being paid considerably less than a heavyweight non-champion and non-title challenger.'

In his most recent performance against Ricardo Lamas at UFC 169 in February, Aldo shared the main card with heavyweight striker Alistair Overeem. The PRIDE veteran and former Strikeforce champion reportedly earned $407,143 ($285,714 to show, $121,429 win bonus) for his grinding decision over Frank Mir, while Aldo walked away with $240,000 ($120,000 to show, $120,000 win bonus).

"We aren't monthly paid, that's why we have to keep fighting," said Aldo. "We always try give the best of us in training to go in the cage and have a good performance, thus giving millions for the company. We also want to have part of these millions."

Aldo faces Mendes Oct. 25 at UFC 179 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

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