Dana White & the "Locker Room Bonuses"
I'm going to be honest with all of you. I'm on drugs right now. Big time. If you follow me on Twitter you would know that I have been a real pansy lately complaining of a rib injury, but all is well now. I have been given magical pills that make everything warm inside (legit Dr). You know what else makes me warm inside? Generosity. And Segues. Incidentally segways also warm me inside, but lets go back to generosity. It's fairly common knowledge that Zuffa takes care of their fighters via discretionary bonuses, it's all just very hush hush.
Here's a theoretical discretionary bonus off the top of my head for those requiring an example: At UFC 129 Lyoto Machida (deservedly) got the Knock Out of the Night bonus, but John Makdessi probably got a few extra bucks for his nasty spinning backfist KO on the undercard. That was conjecture, don't hold me to it. Abe Wagner taught me that word.
Dana White finally discussed discretionary bonuses with MMAJunkie so here it is.
One of the definitions of asinine is: of, relating to, or resembling an ass...So Dana is saying certain conspiracies that come up in this sport look like butts? I don't care what he thinks what looks like as long as these fighters are getting paiiiid son.
We're the only promoters, and we might be the only bosses in the history of the [expletive] world that pay guys more than what the deal is,
"What goes to the commission, those are the deals that we cut. We go in, and we go into these negotiations that last [expletive] weeks sometimes. You hammer back and forth, and you hammer out these deals.
"So the discretionary bonus has turned into this thing where people think, 'Oh, they're doing this thing because they don't want the commission in. That number doesn't mean anything.' That number means everything. We negotiated with these guys to do this deal."
"There are different factors into why guys will get a discretionary bonus. There's never these deals made where it's like, 'OK, this what we're going to pay you on the contract, but then we'll cut you a discretionary bonus of this.'
"First of all, sometimes an event becomes bigger than we anticipated it to be. Sometimes there's more money involved than we budgeted or thought could happen. What do we do? We share with them. We're not going to go, 'Hey, listen. That's your [expletive] deal, buddy. You signed that deal. I don't care how big this event was,' even though that's our right to do.
When you go in and you sign up fighters, and you do these things, and you go out and put on the promotion, 100 percent of the risk is on us – 100 percent of the risk. We go out and do all the marketing, do all the stuff. But if the thing becomes big, and it takes off, why would we not share with them and give them a piece of it?
The other reason a guy might get a bonus is because me and Lorenzo are sick, insane fight fans, and we might be sitting there in our chairs, and when we jump up out of our [swear word] seat and start screaming, 'Holy [expletive],' we're writing that dude a check, no matter what. There have been many cases where the show didn't do what we thought they were going to do, but we felt that he deserved that extra money."
"It happens a lot. It happens every event we do. Not to mention on top of that, we set a bonus number that night for the best fight, the best knockout and the best submission. And you can be a guy that gets that and ends up getting another one, too, just because everything went great, and we thought you deserve it."
"[Fans and media] want to know what [the amounts are] so bad. It drives them crazy. It kills them. It's all they want to know. It's crazy how bad they want to know it. But this is the way I look at it – some of you might understand, and some of you might not – money changes a lot of things. When you're the guy that gets – and I'm just using this as an example, when you get a million-dollar bonus – let's say you get a million-dollar bonus. People come crawling out of the [expletive] woodwork, man. Every uncle, cousin, nephew, people you didn't know you were related to need money. Everybody comes asking you.
"The thing you guys have to understand is we don't always have a 100 percent awesome, rock-solid relationships with all of our fighters. There are guys that I love in this company, and there's guys I can't stand. I don't like them at all. But one thing you will never see, you'll never see these guys come out and start talking about their money or their bonuses or what they got paid. None of you have ever done a story where guys come out and say, 'Yeah, here's what happened: I fought a great fight, I came out, and this was my bonus.' You know why? Because they don't want you to [expletive] know, and they don't want anyone else to know, either. That's their business, just like you guys wouldn't want what you make every year reported in the paper. It's the same thing.
"We've become accustomed to it with professional athletes because in all of the other big sports, it's out there. You think they want it out there? It drives them - nuts. But that's the way these guys like it, and I don't blame them one bit.
But man, it kills the media. They want to [expletive] know that money so bad."
"The fact that we think, A), you fought a great fight and you blew us away that night, or B), the show did better than we expected, and you get a bonus, yeah, that's real sinister. 'That's sneaky.' It's the [expletive] dumbest thing that I have ever heard. The conspiracy theories that come up in this sport are asinine – literally asinine."