Chris Eubank Jr. Criticizes UFC for Underpaying Fighters

November 28, 2023
7 months
Chris Eubank Jr. Criticizes UFC for Underpaying Fighters

Chris Eubank Jr. has criticized Dana White’s approach towards UFC fighters’ pay. 

The 34-year-old happened to be a guest of Ariel Helwani’s ‘The MMA Hour’ during which the issue of fighters’ pay came up. Eubank Jr. is fortunate to have been a part of big PPVs, earning millions of dollars in the process. The fight with Liam Smith and a potential one with Conor Benn later down the line were evidence of that. However, given that UFC fighters make a lot less in comparison, Eubank Jr. pinned the blame on White.

Eubank J. On White

“I like everything about the UFC except how Dana’s monopolized it and how those guys aren’t getting paid anywhere near as much as we’re making in boxing. But that’s the only downside to the sport, in my opinion,” Eubank Jr. said

Those comments were one of the reasons why Francis Ngannou departed from the UFC. Despite being offered an $8 million deal, the former UFC heavyweight champion turned it down on the grounds his independence would be curbed by not being an independent contractor.

Thereafter, Ngannou signed a lucrative deal with the PFL, which allowed him to box. And in doing so, Ngannou secured the highest payday of his career when he boxed Tyson Fury. And yet, that was an isolated incident.

Ngannou’s Departure

“It’s impossible [to get paid fairly]. In the UFC you have a guy who has monopolized the entire MMA world. If you don’t accept what Dana’s giving you, goodbye. Find somewhere else to go. A perfect example is Ngannou. In boxing, you have promoters all over the world, you have associations … all these different outfits of fighting for the best fighters, the best shows, they’re all like, ‘Come with us and we’ll pay you this.’ The competition is so huge that they’re always going to pay fighters more,” Eubank Jr. stated

Outside of the UFC, the state of boxing appears to be in a healthy place. Frank Warren expects Saudi Arabia to become a major player in boxing for years to come. 

The Kingdom is currently putting on the biggest fights in the sport. On October 28th, 2023, Tyson Fury faced Francis Ngannou in a global crossover fight to mark Riyadh Season. The fight was attended by some of the biggest names from sports and entertainment, including Cristiano Ronaldo and Eminem. And as part of that, both boxers secured the biggest purses of their careers. 

Warren On Saudi

In addition, a huge card in Saudi Arabia will feature Anthony Joshua vs. Otto Wallin, as well as Deontay Wilder vs. Joseph Parker on December 23rd, 2023. The expectation is that Joshua will face Wilder provided that both boxers come through with a win.

And to round things off, the undisputed heavyweight championship of the world between Fury and Oleksandr Usyk will take place on February 17th, 2024. And with so many fights planned, Warren expected a lot more going forward. 

“Believe me, it wasn’t easy, but I am sure you will agree it will be well worth it as we further fulfil the vision set out by His Excellency Turki Alalshikh to deliver the best boxing has to offer and become a fixture of Riyadh Season…The truth of the matter is, if you are not enthused by the prospect of the likes of Anthony Joshua, Deontay Wilder, Joseph Parker, Dmitrii Bivol, Jai Opetaia, Daniel Dubois and Filip Hrgovic fighting at the same place on the same night, then perhaps boxing isn’t the sport for you,” Warren revealed

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