Fighter pay has been a hot topic of discussion lately, especially with Al Iaquinta very publicly stating he’s dissatisfaction with his current contract. While other fighters have shied away from giving their views in the public domain, one recently retired fighter has spoken out to give his perspective.
Speaking on his ‘One Punch Podcast’ this week, British bantamweight fighter Brad #Pickett spoke about the benefits of keeping on good terms with the UFC brass. It’s long been a myth that some fighters were paid non-discretionary bonuses back in the days of the Fertitta's, but Pickett confirmed that he had been given one after his final fight at #UFCLondon earlier this year when he was defeated by Marlon Vera. This fight of course took place under the ownership of WME-IMG.
“I’m not sure if I should say this on the podcast, but whatever, sometimes it’s good to have good relationships with your bosses and stuff like that,” Pickett said. “I’ve no qualms with the UFC—they’ve always done really right by me—I’ve been good to them and they’ve been good to me. You don’t bite the hand that feeds you which I think many fighters do and it’s really stupid because they paid me my win money [when I lost to Vera] and they didn’t have to do that—they didn’t have to do that, but they did. Behind the doors they said, ‘Hey Brad, thanks for everything,’ and it’s just little touches like that.”
The Londoner then explained that he didn’t feel the UFC would’ve given him that bonus had he not been on good terms with them. Pickett didn’t criticize Iaquinta, but said that his way of going about things wasn’t the way he ever would’ve done it.
“If I was an a*shole, they wouldn’t give me that—they wouldn’t do that,” Pickett said. “They’d say, ‘Cheers Brad, see you later,’ but sometimes you got to try and get on with the people that you work with. As a promoter, you’re going to have your favorites. As a coach, you’re going to have your favorites—even as Dad you probably have your favorite kids. That’s always going to be the case, so it will always be good to be in their favor. People like Al Iaquinta, I understand it in some ways, but you got to be careful—there are different ways to do things, you know."
Pickett also confirmed that the bonus he received at #UFCLondon wasn’t the first one the UFC had given him. He said he also received one after his fight at UFC 189 when he was defeated by Thomas Almeida in Las Vegas.
“They done it a few times—more than once,” Pickett said. “When I fought Thomas Almeida. When I fought in that fight and I opened the pay-per-view card. There were a couple of times when they looked after me you know. They don’t publicly announce this stuff. Don’t me wrong, it’s a $4 billion company, but they don’t have to [do that]. My contract says this and I signed it. They don’t have to do the things that they do and to me, I’m always thankful.”
Penny for the thoughts of Al Iaquinta who’s yet to win a bonus in the UFC despite beating the likes of Ross Pearson, Kevin Lee, Joe Lauzon and Diego Sanchez all inside the distance.