It wasn’t that long ago that if you asked ‘Joe Blow’ to name one ‘ultimate fighter’, their response would be “Chuck Liddell.” After all, Liddell bombed his way into the mainstream (who can forget his gig on “Entourage”) by knocking out men like Randy Couture and Tito Ortiz. Even in retirement, “The Iceman” remains one of the biggest names associated with MMA.
So, as a man who was compensated quite well for his accomplishments, it shouldn’t be too surprising to hear that Liddell is dismissing the recent wave of critics, who believe the UFC doesn’t pay its fighters enough. While speaking to the SiriusXM Fight Club, the 43 year-old legend argued (comments via MMA Fighting.com):
“Everybody doesn’t want to hurt to lower guys from getting paid, but it comes down to, it’s a performance based business. You get good, you win, then you get paid. Guys are getting paid plenty, trust me. I got paid plenty, trust me.”
“People got to understand, the fighters at the top are the fighters that are supposed to get paid because they’re the guys that are bringing people in, bringing eyes to the TV, getting pay-per-views buys, and putting people in the seats. I mean, that’s what it comes down to. You want to get that? Beat everybody. Be good enough. If you’re not good enough to get there — sorry. It’s not a welfare state.”
“You picked the wrong sport. Hey, you made a good run at it. You tried. Eh, try another sport because this one doesn’t work for you.”
It’s definitely a contentious issue which seems to keep popping up. Liddell, who is also the UFC Executive Vice President of Business Development, has been retired from fighting now for three years. Crazy huh?