Wednesday, May 18, 2022

Mousasi Gives Inside Scoop On How UFC Negotiates With Fighters

Bellator middleweight champion and former UFC fighter Gegard Mousasi gave a recent first-hand account of how the UFC negotiates with fighters.

Mousasi, arguably one of the most underrated fighters in MMA today, has embraced his new home at Bellator since leaving the UFC. He earned the Bellator middleweight title over Douglas Lima at Bellator 250 and is coming off of back-to-back TKO finishes.

Once thought of as a potential future UFC champion, Mousasi’s rise in the UFC came to a halt following some alleged tension-filled contract negotiations. He ended up signing with Bellator and is now pursuing titles in multiple weight classes.

During a recent interview with CBS Sports’ Shakiel Mahjouri, Mousasi revealed what it was like doing business with the UFC when he first joined the promotion.

“The first contract, they said because I was coming off Strikeforce, okay, I wasn’t doing very well in the UFC but they said you sign it or you leave,” Mousasi claimed. “They said no negotiation, you sign or you leave.” (h/t SportsKeeda)

Mousasi fought in the UFC from 2013-2017, with his last victory with the promotion coming against former champion Chris Weidman at UFC 210. He would then sign with Bellator in free agency and make his promotional debut just six months later.

Mousasi went on to detail how the UFC is perceived when it comes to negotiations, compared to the reality of how they handle business.

“UFC can be hard in negotiations,” Mousasi said. “People think it’s all kisses and hugs, believe me they can be brutal. If they need you, Dana White will call you… If they don’t need you, you’re gonna find out on Sherdog that you’ve been released.”

Mousasi’s comments come at a time when the UFC has been at odds with some of its biggest stars, most notably UFC heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou. In the leadup to Ngannou’s win over Ciryl Gane at UFC 270, his negotiations with the UFC were a hot topic of conversation.

The UFC and president Dana White have yet to respond to Mousasi’s comments.

What are your thoughts on Gegard Mousasi’s comments?

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