Demetrious Johnson may be regarded as one of the best pound-for-pound fighters on the planet, but the UFC flyweight champ clearly doesn’t think he’s compensated accordingly.
If you take a glance at the UFC’s P4P rankings right now, you’ll see that Johnson is sitting in the #2 spot, right behind Jon Jones. You earn a ranking like that when you’ve won 9 straight fights, defeated many of the sport’s top flyweights, and are one of the most complete fighters the sport has ever seen.
But, in comparison to other big name fighters, it doesn’t look like Johnson makes nearly as much money as they do. Case in point, for his UD win over John Dodson in September, “Mighty Mouse” was paid a disclosed $191,000. Now sure, that doesn’t include pay-per-view dividends, but Conor McGregor was just handed a check for $1,000,000 at UFC 196. Before PPV proceeds.
Well, recently Johnson appeared on “The MMA Hour”, and while discussing fighter pay, he said this (quote via MMA Mania):
“First off, shout out to Conor McGregor for being the first fighter in UFC to earn seven figures payout. Yes, I do pay attention to that. I honestly do believe I should be closer just for the skill set I bring into the Octagon. Obviously everybody can look back at UFC 191 and see, that’s one of my goals is to inch closer to bigger paydays. Shout out to Nate Diaz, both of those guys for setting the pedestal for us guys to get paid more. We go out there and work our assess off, and the UFC works its ass off to promote the fight and to try to sell tickets. I think that it’s great those guys are getting paid more, but I would obviously like to see Demetrious Johnson’s 197 payout at $500K, baby. Absolutely.”
Now yes, people will pile on and will say Johnson’s not as outspoken as the likes of McGregor, and that at the end of the day, it’s about how many people who want to see you fight. Not how good of a fighter you are.
But, if you’ve been following Johnson in recent months, you know that he’s become much more open, and more outspoken about various issues. He’s in fact, a pretty good interview. Now he may not be busting out McGregor like zingers, but not many people are.
Hopefully, if the Johnson era continues, he’ll start to score bigger pay days. If he goes out and blows away Henry Cejudo at UFC 197 on April 23rd, that will be a big step in that direction.