Darren Till usually plays his contractual cards close to his chest but in a recent fan Q and A on his YouTube page, the Liverpudlian middleweight concluded that he believes the UFC and Reebok should “pay a little more” based on his experience as a main event fighter and the physical sacrifices he made for the fight game.
When asked if he felt the UFC and Reebok should pay fighters more, Till agreed but insisted that he usually keeps financial conversations between himself and Dana White.
“Stuff between me and the UFC, like let’s say stuff between me and Dana [White] is between me and Dana - you know, personal stuff,” Till said. “But this is probably one thing that I will come out and say: I do believe MMA fighters should be paid some more money. I’m not talking saying [we deserve] millions and trillions, a billion - whatever - just what they’re worth, a nice piece of the pie.”
Till suggested that most fighters are reliant on sponsors:
“I was selling out everywhere for the UFC, a big star on the roster and it’s nice to get a cut of the pie, so not to worry about so much stuff. People think, ‘This fighter is earning so much per fight,’ but if a fighter doesn’t have sponsors...See me? I’m the sort of what-you-get-is-what-you-see type of guy, so that scares a lot of sponsors off, but it also attracts sponsors - it’s sort of like a Marmite type of thing. I’ve lost sponsors and gained sponsors through it.”
Till highlighted the uncertainty most fighters feel when it comes to paydays as they know if they suffer an injury they won’t be able to earn money. After listing some significant injuries, he concluded that both the UFC and Reebok should pay more to fighters.
“If I’m earning however much for a fight, that has to last until the next fight. Then, I don’t know if I’m going to get injured...that has to last. I’m a guy who likes to spend money: I like to eat food, a lot food, I like to buy watches, I like a nice car, clothes - I’ve earned that right, I’ve put my body through a lot. This is a new set of teeth for a reason - I had teeth but they got knocked out. I’m deaf in [one] ear, I’ve got bad knees, I won’t be able to walk properly in a few years, [my] hand is permanently destroyed. I’ve earned that right,” he said.
“I do believe that Reebok should pay more and the UFC should pay a little more, but that’s not a thing I like to talk big on, openly. I’d rather have that conversation with Dana man to man, but that’s where I am with that.”
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