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Thursday, Jun 27, 2013

Report: Tim Kennedy Apologizes for Criticizing UFC Pay

Tim Kennedy (photo via Esther Lin / Showtime)

By FCF Staff

Not long after UFC middleweight Tim Kennedy made headlines for characterizing what fighter’s earn as “pathetic” and relaying that he’d make more money emptying “trash cans”, the veteran has reportedly apologized for making the remarks.

According to a report from MMA Fighting, the 33 year-old fighter and decorated soldier has released a statement, which includes the following remarks:

“I recently made comments regarding fighter pay. The intent of these statements was to highlight that professional fighters incur significant expense associated with their preparations to fight and that fighter compensation is still not on par with other major sports. While I am fortunate to have various revenue streams associated with my business interests, most fighters do not have that luxury. When you spend training camps with great guys with amazing talents and you see them barely making ends meet, while simultaneously seeing athletes in other sports with far less character and a far smaller work ethic making exponentially more, you can get frustrated.

“Unfortunately, I made statements that alluded to how the UFC in particular pays its athletes. This was particularly offensive as Zuffa has taken better care of me than any other organization, even giving me a bonus for being amusing on Twitter. My choice of words was poor, not properly informed, and did not match my intent. Additionally, my comments were taken out of context. I can tell you that I have been fighting longer than most people and I remember all too well the days when there was no regulation or standard for an MMA promotion. I fought many times in Mexico where the rules were negligible, there were no physicals, and being paid was a luxury we didn’t expect. Our sport was shunned and was considered ‘human cockfighting.’ Today, we are on Fox. We have doctors and insurance. We make more money than the average American. And we get these things by playing a sport we love. The only reason this is possible is because of Zuffa. They have legitimized the sport and taken better care of the athletes than any other organization, and the trend is only improving, with athletes making three times what they made on average five years ago.”

Kennedy went on to apologize to the “UFC, Dana White, Lorenzo Fertitta, and Joe Silva as well as anyone I might have offended with my comments” and added that it’s an “honor and privilege” to fight for the ZUFFA property.

The middleweight is scheduled to fight Roger Gracie at UFC 162 on July 6th. This was another reason Kennedy’s initial statements grabbed headlines, as unlike fighters like John Cholish and Jacob Volkmann who have criticized UFC compensation recently, the fighter is still signed by the promotion.



posted by FCF Staff @ 9:40 pm
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