“You’re Not Under Somebody’s Thumb…”: Amid Recent Anti-Trust Lawsuit and Concerning Fighter Pay Issues, Dana White and Co. Receives a Brutal Reality Check From Francis Ngannou and Jake Paul’s PFL CEO

Published 09/05/2023, 9:24 PM EDT

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The UFC has arguably become the face of MMA. While it is not the only promotion out there, it is possibly, the most dominant one. In terms of market share, it outperforms every other promotion, establishing its dominance in the MMA entertainment industry. The company wasn’t always in this position, however. History has it that it is the iron hand of Dana White that led the promotion to where it is now.

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But this iron hand has been under fire for a while now. Dana White has been in a less than flattering recently owing to financial disputes within the UFC. Fighters have been complaining of poor pay, and an anti-trust lawsuit also looms over the President’s head. In the face of adversity, the rival company PFL has been circling the UFC. The right opportunity to strike extends outside the Octagon and into the business world as well.

Donn Davis calls out UFC President Dana White

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In a recent update shared by the Front Office Sports Podcast, PFL CEO Donn Davis established their promotion to be “better” in certain aspects. In a competitive statement, the CEO underlined how the PFL might be a more lucrative space for MMA fighters than the UFC. The quote card shared on Instagram read, “UFC’s a great company, but PFL is a great company.

 

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After introducing their name as an equal, if not a superior to the UFC, Donn Davis elaborated, “We do everything they do and we do some things better.” Dana White’s rival CEO explained that his promotion was in fact, better than the UFC at two things. He said, “One, we pay better, and two, you’re in control in the PFL. You’re not under somebody’s thumb. What you do inside the cage controls your future.

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Trouble-ridden run for the UFC President

The UFC has been slapped with an Anti-trust lawsuit. Almost 1200 fighters’ claims have been considered a part of the lawsuit that alleges that the UFC utilized its market dominance to reduce fighter payments. While the fighters are considered contractual during payments, their obligations are closer in line with those of employees. However, this conundrum doesn’t allow fighters to explore other markets and receive better pay.

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White has also recently come under fire from Merab Dvalishvili for throwing shade at the Georgian and his friend, former Bantamweight Champion, Aljamain Sterling, for refusing to fight each other. Sterling reiterates that they are not paid enough to go up against each other. With fighters complaining of having to work multiple jobs to sustain a career in the UFC, the PFL will look to capitalize. With the likes of the former UFC Champion Francis Ngannou and social media influencer turned boxer Jake Paul signing contracts with the PFL, only time will tell whether the market sees a major upset.

Watch This Story: Potential Opponents For Jake Paul After Nate Diaz Triumph

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Written by:

Rajdeep Jayan

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Rajdeep Jayan is a UFC writer at EssentiallySports. Rajdeep was inculcated into the world of combat sports through his love for Sylvester Stallone's iconic character, the 'Italian Stallion,' Rocky Balboa. His early obsession with the genre was recently rekindled by the debates he would engage in with his roommate during his college days.
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Edited by:

Sameen Nawathe

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