‘UFC is Not Paying the Fighters’- Luke Rockhold Says Jon Jones Deserves $20 Million

Published 05/22/2021, 7:57 AM EDT
PERTH, AUSTRALIA – FEBRUARY 11: Luke Rockhold prepares to enter the Octagon before facing Yoel Romero of Cuba in their interim middleweight title bout during the UFC 221 event at Perth Arena on February 11, 2018 in Perth, Australia. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)


Former UFC middleweight champion Luke Rockhold spoke to Helen Yee and shared his views on former rival Jon Jones. Chiefly, there was a time when Rockhold was vying to take on Jones when he decided to move up to 205-pound. However, things have changed drastically since then and Jones is now a heavyweight looking to scalp his second belt.

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‘Bones’ Jones has been entrenched in a negotiation battle with the UFC brass which has caused his debut to be majorly delayed. Jon Jones was in line to fight Francis Ngannou for the title. However, he can’t reach a deal with the UFC. Jones has claimed that the UFC has constantly lowballed him and refuses to match his offer.

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Luke Rockhold buries the hatched and sides with Jones

Despite their history, Luke Rockhold put aside any past differences and expressed a desire to see Jones get the money he’s been asking for. According to Rockhold, boxers get paid much more money for fighting opponents who aren’t on their level. In stark contrast, Jones has been fighting the very best since 2011 and is the consensus MMA GOAT.

PERTH, AUSTRALIA – DECEMBER 12: American former UFC middleweight champion Luke Rockhold during a UFC 221 workout session on December 12, 2017 in Perth, Australia. (Photo by Will Russell/Getty Images)

“They just need to pay him [Jones]. I agree with Jon and I agree with everybody else, pay the man. The guys earned his spot as the GOAT in the sport…. considering the UFC is the most popular sport in the world versus what these guys in boxing are fighting bums for $20 million-plus.

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“Where is that money going? Why is boxing able to pay so much with such little traction and audience? Obviously, they’re absorbing the money, the UFC, and not paying the fighters what they deserve. I think Jon Jones deserves it. If anyone deserves it Jon Jones deserves it. Pay the man, especially with a fight like that, that’s a big fu**ing fight.”

Jon Jones has definitely etched a legacy in MMA that has commanded respect from his peers and rivals. At one point, Jones was at ends with AKA, but fighters like Rockhold and Daniel Cormier sided with him in his battle against the UFC.

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Darryl Pinto

1613 articles

Darryl Pinto is a senior MMA writer at EssentiallySports. He is currently pursuing his graduate degree in Mass Media (with a specialization in Journalism) out of Xavier’s College and has a year's experience in his current role. Darryl specializes in predictions, reporting, and covering UFC events live.

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