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A.J. Agazarm takes over Metamoris' Instagram account, alleging failure to pay

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Eduardo de Lima black belt A.J. Agazarm used a planned 'takeover' of jiu-jitsu promoter Metamoris' Instagram account on Tuesday to instead chastise the organization and its promoter Ralek Gracie. Among a range of other complaints, Agazarm most notably claimed Metamoris has failed to pay him and other competitors for services rendered.

"For quite sometime you have been using my image, my likeness, and the likenesses of others to promote your business and the brand of Metamoris. You claim to represent the values that Jiu Jitsu stands for, but you have been hiding behind empty promises," Agazarm writes.

"It has been over 6 months since my bout against Karo Parisyan, and I still haven't been paid. It's not about the money (it wasn't a lot) but instead it is about the principle. We put everything on the line to make it as exciting and entertaining as possible for the fans. I took the match on short notice to help save your show, as you would otherwise have been left without a main event. To this date my match is still behind your paywall and I have not yet seen a single dollar."

Dear Ralek, For quite sometime you have been using my image, my likeness, and the likenesses of others to promote your business and the brand of Metamoris. You claim to represent the values that Jiu Jitsu stands for, but you have been hiding behind empty promises. It has been over 6 months since my bout against Karo Parisyan, and I still haven't been paid. It's not about the money (it wasn't a lot) but instead it is about the principle. We put everything on the line to make it as exciting and entertaining as possible for the fans. I took the match on short notice to help save your show, as you would otherwise have been left without a main event. To this date my match is still behind your paywall and I have not yet seen a single dollar. Since this match I have competed in organizations such as Polaris and Berkut, who paid my travel expenses, did an incredible job of promoting me as an athlete, but most importantly upheld the moral code of the artist and treated me and the community with respect by paying me on time and not compromising the cards of the viewers. I think it is massively unjust that your brand equity continues to ascend by using the image of the athletes that you promised to pay (but do not) while organizations such as Polaris are struggling with brand recognition and event success. The last Polaris card was one of the best the community has ever seen and not just for the quality of the match ups. They paid all their athletes (plus expenses) and did not make a profit. This is elevating the sport and allowing us athletes to make a living. It's been 6 months - you haven't paid me, you promised me an additional bout on Metamoris that I have not seen, yet you still benefit from using our fight to promote your show. Make this right. Stop double charging your customers and pay your athletes. The Instagram takeover will continue until you've done right. On April 2nd I will face Ben Askren in a sub-only match in the UK for @polaris_professional. I am looking forward to this match for a number of reasons, but mainly because I am getting the opportunity to showcase my skills against a very tough opponent in a clash of styles. -@thefloridaboy

A photo posted by metamoris (@metamoris) on

Agazarm, a decorated and internationally-competitive jiu-jitsu black belt, battled UFC veteran Karo Parisyan to a draw at a Metamoris event in August. The main event for the August Metamoris event was originally slated to be Atos black belt J.T. Torres. Torres withdrew from the contest due to injury, which ultimately resulted in Agazarm filling in on late notice.

No financial information regarding the alleged amounts owed by Metamoris is known at this time.

"It's been 6 months - you haven't paid me, you promised me an additional bout on Metamoris that I have not seen, yet you still benefit from using our fight to promote your show. Make this right. Stop double charging your customers and pay your athletes. The Instagram takeover will continue until you've done right," Agazarm promises.

MMA Fighting has reached out to Metamoris for comment about Agazarm's actions and allegations. We will update this article if and when they choose to reply.

Agazarm competes on April 2nd against former Bellator and current ONE Championship welterweight king Ben Askren as part of the Polaris Pro Invitational.